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|Hello Nicey and Team|
I have been enjoying your site for some time now and it certainly takes the mind off things. Good news about Huntley & Palmers. As a Reading girl it brings nostalgic tears to the eye.
I recently took a British Airways flight in pursuit of the business your site helps me take my mind off, but not in swanky business class. BA have taken to offering a strange box of snacklike things in lieu of a meal – rather more akin to the packed lunches everyone ate within ten minutes down the M4 on the school coach trips… Along with possibly the smallest cake portion I’ve ever seen and something in a steamy plastic bag reminiscent of those towels things in Chinese restaurants was a very tiny KitKat indeed. I didn’t have a ruler on me, as that is probably one of the things they confiscate before you board these days, but it can’t have been more than 4cm long, but with two fingers for the sake of form. As you have probably gathered I find something profoundly disturbing about miniturism, especially where food is concerned, but ate it anyway, so sorry no photographic evidence. It sets the teeth on edge like really twee souvenir fairy things (I bet there were tons in Cornwall). If someone were to offer you a bit of their KitKat and that was all you got you would think them jolly mean.
And it tasted funny – rather a praliney taste rather like foreign chocolate that has been made with homogenised milk like Hershey Bars. Now what I want to know is whether this is because it had been manufactured in some sinister Nestle plant far from all that is proper and Rowntree, or does KitKat taste different at high altitudes or in a pressurised compartment? I gather tea is so foul on planes because water boils at a different temperature or something. They serve it pointedly after they can see you have eaten everything which could possibly be dunked as well. Has anyone else come across one of these midget KitKats (or other insultingly small airline biscuits?) Does anyone know where they are made? Or has anyone eaten a proper KitKat smuggled on to the plane and found an unusual taste?
|Nicey replies: Barbara,
It so happens I've written a bit in our book about aircraft food miniaturisation, in the section on Sitting Down. The thing about KitKats is that they are now made in all sorts of places, India, Czechoslovakia for example, by various parts of Nestlé so they could be some exotic ones.
My colleagues and I have just been having a heated debate and wondered if you could clear something up for us.
If the Kit-Kat is a chocolate covered biscuit, is the chunky kit-kat still a chocolate covered biscuit or has it made a successful transition to fully-fledged chocolate bar?
Many thanks and regards,
|Nicey replies: Yes I can see how this is can be troubling. The KitKat has always been ambivalent about what it is, preferring to sit on the fence. Of course it would appear that with the chunky they have firmly aligned themselves with the chocolate bars, and in doing so cast doubt amongst those who would call the conventional KitKat a biscuit. Personally I don't feel the need to make hard and fast calls on the KitKat's nature. The big Venn diagram of biscuits would simply move the chunky KitKat out of the union of chocolate bars and chocolate covered biscuits, into chocolate bars. It could still sit next to its forbearers though so that it doesn't look too dramatic.|
finally the Kit Kat gets its true place as a biscuit! It comes in long packets of many biscuits, like Penguins do, which qualifies them as a biscuit. They taste better with a cup of tea, chocolate bars don't.
Anyhow, thought you'd like to know the Kit Kat still enjoys all its foil covered glory in Canada, although its that naff paper backed stuff like Jacobs Club. Nevertheless, you can still rub the logo through into it and then run your nail up the split, not quite as satisfying as proper foil but you can't have everything. It helped me survive all of last winter in British Cloumbia, shame they can't do proper tea as well (good beer in proper pint glasses makes up for it).
How can you possibly eat a modern Brit Kit Kat when you can't split each finger with that little strip of wrapper still attached so that it floats in your tea and then electrocutes your fillings. Heaven.
Tunnock's Tea Cakes is the last great biscuit tradition we have left unsullied.
|Nicey replies: I was only thinking about British Cloumbia before lunch, and all those mad fossilised things in the Burgess shales from half a billion years ago.|
As a York resident (although not a native), I enjoyed your review of the 2-finger KitKat. Through my work, I've had the privilege (?!) of seeing them made although I still can't tell you what the brown stuff is that holds the wafer together!
Anyway, the other day I was given some chocolate biscuits carrying that other great York name Terry's. These are "Waifa", a kind of KK 4-finger equivalent but with dark chocolate. I thought they were rather good and wondered if you'd seen them and were going to do a review and put them to the test against the mighty red giant.
I have to say, though, that my York pride took a severe blow when I discovered that Waifa is not made in our fair city but in.....Belgium! They still taste good, though and they do have a foil wrapping.
Best wishes and thanks for a great web site,
|Nicey replies: I think I've seen Waifas in Lidls or on the continent, I've never tried them though as their name suggested they may be a bit wafery.|
|Dear Nicey et al,|
One thing you did not mention in your Bic of the Week is that KitKats have a massive following in the United States as well. In fact, many Americans don't know that KitKat is a European brand at all - especially since the U.S. has their own branch of Nestle and manufactures, packages, and markets the biscuits/chocolate bars/whatever the heck they are all by their own selves. To cap it all off there's always that obnoxious jingle that the chaps in the U.S. ads seem to burst into whenever they eat one: "Gimme a break, gimme a break, break me off a piece o' that Kit-Kat-Bar!" Oy vey. But it's still a pretty good bicky.