Reviewer’s Note: Samples of the products discussed here were provided to me for reviewing purposes at no cost.
There’s a reason Fannie May Berries has been in business for nearly a hundred years. It’s a reason that I could plainly taste in the sample of fresh chocolate-covered strawberries sent to me for the purpose of this review.
The hand-dipped berries arrived on dry ice in an attractive box suitable for gift-giving. The fruit, wearing an assortment of dark, milk, and white chocolates less like a coat than a suit of thick armor, was large enough to be impressive comparative to similar products. Notable upon my biting each strawberry was a difference between these and other fresh berries robed in chocolate. Having experienced other vendors’ products whose chocolate veneers cracked and fell away from the fruit under the stress of an initial bite, I was pleased by how well it adhered to the strawberries in this case (no doubt owing to both the quality of Fannie May’s chocolate and the thickness of its application.)
Because the assortment that I sampled came to me near the end of the 2012 calendar year, holiday-inspired flavors dominated. Creamy white chocolate infused with the flavor of eggnog or dotted with peppermint candy cane pieces, and dark chocolate dusted with spiced gingerbread crumbs were a few of the offerings presented, and though chocolate-covered berries of this sort are no new or isolated event in the realm of dipped treats, few things are sadder or more disheartening than seeing them executed poorly. Fannie May’s covered berries suffer from no such shortcoming. Of all the flavors I sampled, I found no combination of chocolate infusions or added toppings that didn’t complement each other as well as the fruit. The non-Christmas themed flavor catalog remains equally enticing.
With January nearly one-third gone, one can almost see Valentine’s Day already crouching behind it, awaiting the right moment to spring upon gift-giving procrastinators who, if they aren’t careful, will end up as unprepared as they were well-intentioned. Considering Fannie May’s variety of chocolate coatings and accoutrements in which to roll their dipped berries (sea salt/caramel, toasted coconut, and champagne/platinum sugar to name a few), now is a good time to think about sharing something sweet from a company that has officiated over enough marriages between strawberries and chocolates to have it down to an art.