Is there anything that says festive season quite like a bowl of glittering, jewel-like Quality Street chocolates? They sit in a bowl and almost magnetically your hand reaches for your favourite one. We wanted to taste and test the iconic Christmas choccie once and for all, cracking a few myths along the way.
Quality Street price per kilo
Just as Easter Eggs and red roses are seasonal, so Quality Street chocolates are synonymous with December holidays, bringing with them many different special prices. Here’s what our research found:
For this test, we purchased four 500g packets of Quality Street – a total of 2kgs of chocolates and toffees. We laid out all the chocolates by flavour and counted them to determine which were the most common and which flavours are rarer. By far the most common is the Dairy Fresh Toffee in the gold wrapper, while the rarer ones are the Noisette Supreme, also known as The Green Triangle. (Myth has it that there is only one green triangle per bag – we, in fact, found an average of 2,75 triangles per packet.)
We tasted and rated them all, and wrote up some tasting notes to help you pick the best Quality Street. Here they are, listed from least favourite to all-time choccie champion:
Strawberry Secret Deep, dark and delicious with a sweet fruity pop of strawberry to finish. (Round red cellophane wrapper.)
As one taster said: “Shem man.” It tried to be a dark chocolate bonbon with a strawberry centre, but it just ended up being sickly sweet and maybe, kinda, fruity-ish. The comment that sums it all up: “Love the dark chocolate! Not so sure about the strawberry filling – and why isn’t it pink anymore?! I feel deprived.” Voted most likely to be left at the bottom of the bowl. Score: 59/100
Dairy Fresh Toffee Moreish dense cavity-defying toffee with sweet creamy notes. (Rectangle gold cellophane wrapper).
Our tasters said: “Takes me back to my childhood, but very chewy and takes longer to dissolve”, and some were disappointed by the absence of chocolate: “Too hard and sticky. Almost broke a tooth. Plus, there’s no actual chocolate!”. These are not recommended for sensitive teeth, but will last a long time in your pocket if you’re fishing for a takeaway Quality Street. Score: 62/100
Tropical Coconut Hits the high tropical notes with all things sweet, bitty and coconutty. (Rectangle blue cellophane wrapper).
If you love coconut, you’re in for a real treat with this one. It’s perhaps not quite as flavourful as a Bounty Bar, and leans a bit towards crumbly dryness. However, after all the toffee and nuts, our testers said: “The coconut was a nice relief” and “It’s like a Bounty Bar but bite-sized! The coconut interior is very pleasing indeed. Coconut for President.” One taster declared emphatically: “I never eat them – avoid at all costs” Score: 65/100
Luxury Toffee Finger Bite-size toffee treats with just the right amount of chew – you’ll be left with rich buttery notes as you go back for more! (Long rectangle gold cellophane wrapper).
The iconic chocolate shape has been responsible for many a tug of war between siblings. The toffee is not too large, which makes it easier on the jaw. Legend has it that there is only one of these per packets. (We, in fact, counted an average of 4.5 Toffee Fingers per packet.) Score: 66/100
Enchanted Toffee Malty notes escape from the dense toffee centre as it melts in the mouth. (Dark red oval cellophane wrapper).
Ah, another cavity-cracker, but this time with a darker flavour. The rich, Horlicks-like taste will attract some, but overall it wasn’t a favourite in the mix. Score: 69/100
Duo Decadence The rich, smooth white chocolate is really what brings the decadence to this duo! (Oval in gold foil).
We really wanted to be excited about this one, but really – it’s just Top Deck. The white chocolate was a welcome change of pace in the chocolate line up. Our experts said: “Nostalgic top decker chocolate was always and still isv my fave” and “A universal crowd-pleaser – this could also be seen as a boring choice” and “Perfect blend of both white and dark chocolate.” Score: 70/100
Fudge Delight A soft, buttery, fudgy middle encapsulated by milk chocolate. (Rectangle in pink foil).
If you’re here for the sugar kick, this little pink foil nugget is the one you want. It’s also a great choice if you like your chocolate with a smooth textures. Tasters commented: “Fudgey and delightful” and “Lovely, creamy texture – melts in the mouth!” Score: 72/100
Dessert Coffee Cream This one has a soft, lush coffee centre just waiting to be released from its chocolate coating! (Square in pink foil).
This one all hinges on your love of coffee-flavoured sweeties, which our tasters demonstrated is not shared by everyone. “Coffee-flavoured chocolates are gross,” says one. But, if you love mocha, this is probably the first one you should grab! Score: 73/100
Hazelnut Surprise This one comes with a crisp crunch from the whole hazelnut in the centre enrobed by decadent milk chocolate. (Square in dark purple foil).
This is a fairly simple milk chocolate wrapped in foil – our tasting panel found this one pleasant but not actually surprising. Comments from the panel: “I love nuts in chocolate, so this one scored highly for me” and “Tasted a bit like a Cadbury Whole Nut chocolate… it’s just not the most exciting in the Quality Street box.” Score: 74/100
Noisette Supreme Smooth, creamy and melt-in-your-mouth chocolate with subtle hazelnut notes at the end. (Triangle in green foil).
A fancy name for what we all know as The Green Triangle. Family myths across South Africa have it that there is only one per packet, but our research has proven that there’s at least 2 on average in a 500g packet. Score: 77/100
Deluxe Toffee Cup A toffee cup with the ideal sweet ooze factor. (Round dome in gold foil).
These dome-shaped chocolates are filled with liquid caramel. Don’t try to bite this one – you’ll only mess caramel down your chin. Our testers commented: “Soooo good! The queen of the box” and “Perfect chocolate to just melt in the mouth with a hidden surprise in the centre.” With its liquid centre, this one is definitely not recommended for sharing – which is good, because it came in at second place. Score: 82/100
Nut Toffee Royale The name says it all – hazelnut goodness with the perfect toffee pull, all enclosed by creamy milk chocolate. (Large oval purple cellophane wrapper).
This one scored highly with its triple combination of chocolate, liquid toffee
and whole nut, earning it the winning spot. More commonly known as the Purple One. Comments from the testers made their feelings very clear: “I’m dead…. dead dead. Who made this? Love it” and “Nuts, chocolate and toffee – all the good things!” Score: 84/100
The winner is Nut Toffee Royale AKA The Purple One.
Original photographs styled by Bianca Jones and shot by Katy Rose.
The rules of Food24 Tastes:
– All tasters tasted and scored all 12 samples.
– The samples were tasted without wrappers or foil, and were not easily identifiable.
– The samples were not labelled and were tasted in a random order.
– Each sample was rated on texture, taste and likeability.
– This article is not sponsored in any way, and Food24 was not paid to come to any particular result. Our taste tests are always unbiased and intended for your entertainment. You may, however, have come to this article through various paid-for advertising.
Note: Prices correct at time of publication.