The Good: Pretty, Taste good, Nice mint undertone
The Bad: Expensive! Somewhat waxy chocolate
The Basics: Provisionally recommended - under the condition that one pays no more than $2.50 for a box - M&M's Premiums Mint Chocolate candies are good, but overpriced.
If you're anything like me, when you see the $5.00 packs of M&M's Premiums, you wonder "What do those guys think they're pulling on us?!" M&M/Mars has to know that most people aren't going to pay five dollars for slightly larger M&M's candies with different flavors in boxes as opposed to bags. Well, they're right. The only reason I'm reviewing these - and I am unsurprised no one else has beaten me to the punch - is because this week, my local grocery store put the entire collection of M&M's Premiums on clearance. My wife, who wanted a day in bed together eating junkfood and watching movies, picked me up the M&M's Premiums Mint Chocolate flavored candies and the only reason I let her - outside having a real soft spot for her and mint chocolate - was because the candy was half price. Still, at $2.43 on clearance, this box filled with oversized M&M's is exactly what is seems: a bit pricey for what one gets. Even so, these are good and they make a good gift or stocking stuffer for those who love mint chocolate. Like the Mocha M&M's Premiums (reviewed here!), the Mint Chocolate are good, but a tough sell at the inflated price.
M&M's Premiums is a boxed M&M's product which is designed to appeal to adults and others who like more upscale chocolates. The six ounce box encases a resealable plastic bag and the clear bag is visible through the display window in the box. M&M's Premiums are larger than regular M&M's in that they are about twice as thick as classic M&M's candies. The basic formula M&M's is working with with their M&M's Premiums candies is intact, though: this is a small chocolate candy with a hard chocolate shell protecting it.
However, M&M's Premiums have flavors not available in regular bags of M&M's. To date, the only one I've tried is the Chocolate Mint flavor because my partner knows of my love of chocolate mint and my desire to try virtually everything with that flavor. The 1/2" round by 1/4" thick M&M's Premiums Chocolate Mint candies have an pearlescent green shell that is spotted with brown. The shell is designed to appear artistic and the metallic look to it sets it apart from other M&M's and the green color is distinctive enough that - outside very low light - it stands out from the other M&M's Premiums candies. The 6 oz. box contains approximately one hundred Mint Chocolate candies.
Ease Of Preparation
These are candies that have been made by the fine folks at M&M's/Mars and as a result, preparing them is as easy as opening the box and the bag inside and removing the chocolates and putting them in your mouth. It does not need to be any more complicated than that! M&M's Premiums come ready-to-eat and the box and bag are both resealable compliments of tabs. So long as one opens the inner bag at the tab that says "pull here" the bag is easily resealable.
Putting the Mint Chocolate M&M's Premiums candy on one's tongue instantly yields the familiar smooth texture of an M&M's candy. While the candy might be a little thicker, its coating almost instantly begins to melt when put on the tongue. The shell of the Mint Chocolate candy is thinner and softer than that of a traditional M&M's candy and it melts away quickly. At room temperature, the Mint Chocolate candies have a scent that is strongly peppermint and mass-produced chocolate.
The scent sets the consumer up for exactly what they will taste. The M&M's Premiums mix perfectly the tastes of chocolate and mint. The chocolate is slightly waxy, but has a fudge consistency and flavor to it, making it softer and richer than standard M&M's chocolate. The infusion of mint is cool and sharp and is blended with the taste of chocolate in the center in a way that makes one wonder why regular M&M's never had a mint flavor. The M&M's Premiums Mint Chocolate flavor utilizes white chocolate in the center to blend with the mint flavor and the chocolate and the white chocolate is almost entirely sublimated to the mint flavoring. In fact, the white chocolate acts as a carrier for the mint.
The peppermint in the mint chocolate center has a cool bite, but it is cut by the chocolate's smoothness and milky flavor. Sadly, there is little to describe beyond that; the taste is a wonderful blending of chocolate and mint and outside the fact that some of the candies seem to have the balance off - often more chocolate than mint - it seems like M&M's Premiums got this flavor exactly right!
Obviously, these are candies and the folks at M&M's/MARS do not intend for consumers to live on them. They are a snack and not a terribly nutritious one at that. A serving is considered 1.5 oz., which is approximately twenty-five pieces. With the standard recommended serving size, the candy has 240 calories, 130 of which are from fat! That's 22% of the RDA of fat, with 45% of it coming from the nine grams of saturated fat! Just writing that makes my heart ache! While there is 4% of the RDA of calcium and two grams of protein, there is no denying that this candy is not good for you and one ought to use it as a dessert occasionally, not a meal ever.
The lack of health benefits ought to be obvious from the ingredients list, which rather terrifyingly does not include anything remotely like "mint" in it! Instead, after white and semisweet chocolates and corn syrup, the ingredients degenerate into colorings that are simply defined as colors with numbers and no elaboration as to the chemical composition of them. These are made on machines which may also work on peanuts and almonds, so those with allergies are duly warned.
Just as with the preparation, M&M's Premiums candies are low stress when it comes to storage and cleanup. Storage is simple when the candies are kept in their box and bag at room temperature or cooler. Kept cool and out of direct sunlight, these confections have an indefinite shelf life (there is a production code, but no expiration date on my package). Resealed properly and kept cool, they ought to remain good.
M&M's were made famous by the catchphrase "melts in your mouth, not in your hands" and the M&M's Premiums seem to be a little softer than traditional M&M's but also do not seem to melt until they are in one's mouth. As a result, they should not require any cleanup as they are very clean to eat. However, should one melt clothing one is wearing, consult a fabric guide for what removes chocolate from that type of garment. Otherwise, melted mint chocolate M&M's Premiums should wipe right off non-porous surfaces with a warm, we cloth.
Mint Chocolate M&M's Premiums are good, but they are expensive for the size and quality of the candies. Even so, M&M's does seem to get the flavor just right and anyone who can find them reasonably priced ought to make an effort to indulge in them . . . at least until they get discontinued!
For other chocolate reviews, please check out my takes on:
Hershey's Irish Creme Kisses
Russell Stover Mississippi Mud Truffles
Peppermint Crunch Junior Mints
For other food and drink reviews, please be sure to check out my index page for an organized listing!
© 2011, 2009 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.
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