Milka cries comfort. From the brand’s bucolic scenes of cows grazing the Alps to the serene purple packaging, this is chocolate you’ll crave in a crisis. Fitting, then, that the Hungarian arm of its European empire should bring out a bar called ‘Hug Me’. And its wish is my command – the pairing of pear and chocolate is one I’m more than happy to take to heart.
My first ‘Milka Moment™’ was when a rather more affluent chum returned from a school skiing trip bearing a blooming great bar for me. The mate might have intended the gift as a booby prize, but as a plump preteen, I felt I’d hit the jackpot. All the edible ecstasy, none of the exercise? Yes, please.
For a nation raised on Cadbury’s, it’s logical we Brits should take to Milka like ducks to water. It’s every bit as sweet and creamy as our dear Dairy Milk, but much more melt-in-the-mouth – with none of that cakey crumble of CDM. Amazon would definitely recommend both brands to fans of either.
The similarly pleasing taste profile has not gone unnoticed by the bigwigs at parent company Mondelez. Check out the flavours of the latest Cadbury bars, and you’ll see the same inclusions Milka is matched with elsewhere in Europe – Ritz crackers, LU biscuits, Daim. I, for one, will be damn happy if Mondelez’s methodology means more mad Milka flavours hitting supermarket shelves soon.
In the meantime, there’s much Milka to be found in Turkish and Eastern European groceries and newsagents, where the confectionary section positively abounds with it. I’m almost as commonly found hanging around those stores as the bars themselves, but pear Milka was news to me – and at the bargain price of 89p. Agent Greedy was having a good day.
Pear is a funny old flavour. Naysayers say it evokes nail varnish remover, and even fans will admit it can veer towards the totally tropical taste of banana. For something so natural, it certainly aint easy to get the flavour tasting so.
But, huzzah, Milka has managed! Peeling open the purple packet was like spritzing a particularly potent perfume around the room; the chocolate more fragrant and pear-like than any real pear could hope to be. I was wary – often it seems what smells good falls flat in the mouth. Not so with this fruity beauty, though.
On first inspection, the squares seem solid, but the initial resistance of the silky smooth shell gives way to a mousse which is where the pear really reveals itself. The flavour is as true on the tongue as on the nose, the unlikely duo of milk chocolate and pear pairing perfectly in a most moreish manner.
This Milka bar might have come from Hungary, but it definitely didn’t leave my stomach rumbling – especially once I’d polished off the lot in a single sitting. The ‘Hug Me’ bar is one of a trio of treats which also includes ‘Love Me’ (plum’n’cream) and ‘Kiss Me’ (orange’n’yogurt). If all the bars taste this good, I’d happily honour all of their requests.