I’ll be honest: I find mangoes mysterious and unpredictable.
I suppose a great deal of that comes from the fact that I just never really ran into them when I was growing up — a picky eater, apples were a tough sell, so mangoes were probably far out of the question. Also, Wisconsin.
As a grownup, I’ve had them a couple of times, but I’ve never really known about whether I’m eating them right. Am I supposed to use a knife? I can’t tell when they’re ripe? They have a pleasant enough taste, sometimes? Not so pleasant, though, that they have warranted further investigation.
And thus, here we are, describing fruit on a candy bar blog like a character played by James Spader on a network drama.
As a result, when Holtsford Bar — one of our regulars at Timmy’s, who, when not loving sugar cookies, rooting for the Panthers or believing in Knobby, has been one of BOaP’s stronger supporters — brought in a Ghirardelli Mango Sunset bar, I was as dubious as I was puzzled what to expect. I knew he wouldn’t be bringing, like, poison, but … mango and chocolate? Counselor Shore, you’re a loose cannon!
As is often the case, though, I’m a dope. The candy bar was damn good.
Sometimes, when you eat flavored chocolate, you can tell that it’s just chocolate and they threw some artificial flavoring in there; you’re hanging out with a friend but he/she also brought his/her shitty friend along. The experience is enough like hanging out with just your friend, but it’s less fun because you can’t stop noticing that shitty friend. Sometimes, the shitty friend is so shitty that it ruins hanging out with your friend altogether.
The Mango Sunset [Ed. note: I want to have a comment about the name, but I just can’t muster anything up.] is nothing like that, though. It’s more like hanging out with a friend who brought his/her new friend along and the new friend is delightful to the point that you’re really happy they came but you’re at the point where you don’t really have the capacity to make any more friends so you just appreciate and enjoy the new friend’s company and extend an open invitation to hang out that you don’t ever really plan on following up on.
Which is to say: The dark chocolate and the mango work together harmoniously and are a genuinely fun combination. The mango flavor is strong, but not fake-tasting, and has a fantastic complement in the bitterness of the dark chocolate. Whether chewed or allowed to melt on the tongue, the tropical-ness of the mango dances across the palate and elicits an almost whimsical response.
It’s not a candy bar I’d want to eat all the time — you definitely have to be in the mood for a Mango Sunset. But you know that your friend’s friend is almost definitely not going to hit you up for a happy hour, so you just kind of appreciate that it’s there and look forward to the next time you run into it.
BREAKING NEWS: Pretentious candy bar bros get their pretentious comeuppance
I don’t like to say that I hate people, because, at its heart, the word “hate” is awful in just about any context. I do, however, have a Fk That Dude list.
The Mast Brothers? Fk those dudes. On the list.