I found these quite a long time ago at Uwajimaya in Bellevue. They’re all chocolate-flavored, but sourced from three different countries: Australia, England (United Kingdom), and Japan. If you’re wondering why the United States isn’t in there, it’s probably because Nestle doesn’t make American KitKats at all, and it wouldn’t be a very good comparison anyway.
This bag contains five double mini bars from England and Australia, and three from Japan (because the target audience would presumably already be familiar with them).
So! You don’t often get a chance to sample regional versions of well-known products side by side, so I think this was a really neat idea on Nestle’s part. Personally, I’d previously tried chocolate KitKats from the United States, Japan, Dubai and Canada, and aside from the American ones I don’t think I ever noticed a difference. So I was excited!
The printed descriptions are more informative and complex than anything I’ve tried to half-assedly translate before, so I’ll defer to this translation from MMM-FRUIT!:
- The UK (イギリス), also known as “The Birthplace” or Origin chocolate, features a burnt sugar and milk flavor, with a subtle amount (0.38%) of almond paste to bring out the flavor.
- Australia (オーストラリア), or “Proud of Mother Nature” chocolate, has a creamy vanilla taste. It contains 0.36% of a cream powder to give it a sweet taste.
- Japan (日本), or “Balance” chocolate, is just that: a balance of aroma and flavor.
Both the Australian and British bars were very noticeably, surprisingly, creamy — as described. If you really pay attention, you can pick out the marzipan-like flavor in the UK version, which is a nice little bonus treat, but they’re both quite similar in character.
The Japanese version suffered in comparison. Nestle describe it as “balanced” but there was kind of a metallic sourness to it that was unpleasant after the other two varieties, followed by a generic sweetness that wasn’t creamy at all. Honestly, if you’d put me in a blind taste test and told me one of these was from Hershey, PA, I would have picked out the Japanese one for sure.
… But maybe familiarity breeds contempt.
One way in which none of these are like American KitKats — careful when you handle them! They melt something like instantly in your hands.