While Kit Kat collaborations are something that fans have come to expect, they’re still somewhat few and far between when you’re covering the brand with a dedicated blog and an eagle-eye… which made the announcement a few months back of these Rilakkuma Hot Cake flavoured Kit Kats downright amazing. Not just a rebranding of an existing flavour, like the Mos Burger white chocolate or the Japan Post dragon Kit Kats, this is an all-new flavour and one of my favourites at that…!
Over on my ‘regular’ blog, I covered a pancake-flavoured beverage a few years back that still gets all sorts of crazy hits, and (spoiler) it was delicious, and so my hopes going into this collaboration between an exciting flavour courtesy of a cutesy icon rapidly approaching Hello Kitty levels of popularity and my beloved chocolate wafers… well… they were high. Let’s put it that way: I had high expectations.
Packaging: I know, I know, once you’ve seen a hundred flavours of Kit Kat literally anything out of the ordinary will get your attention, but this really is some pretty elaborate packaging… and excellent at that!
This is a box of 12 individually-wrapped 2-finger bars, exactly like the standard gift-sets, except the box is just tricked-out, there’s no other way to describe it. It’s got 8 sides, for starters (most boxes have 6), with the left and right sides shaped like irregular hexagons…! The frontspiece features a special die-cut so that brand-icon Rilkkuma and brand-logo Kit Kat actually appear larger than the boxes they’re printed on. Within the box is a clear-plastic bag filled with Kit Kat fingers. This is wholly unique Kit Kat packaging, and I have to say I was excited when I saw it on the rack…!
The box art is pretty great too, with big graphics of the leads, a nice bright yellow to make the box pop, and different illustrated adornments on every face. The flavour is communicated through Japanese and English writing AND illustrations, everything I want! The overall design is very young and cute—it’s clearly intended for actual children or the cute-obsessed (mostly) ladies in their 30s, but it’s hard to see this packaging as anything other than stellar. It feels like a real gift in your hands, is beautifully decorated, and contains the promise of even more.
I might be overselling this a little…?
Scent: Wow. There’s a sweet syrup scent, but perhaps even more exciting? Butter! It’s so buttery it almost smells like popcorn… or maybe a popcorn jellybean? Heh. Despite this being a white chocolate Kit Kat, I’m not getting any of that tell-tale scent, just a really bright, sweet scent… sort of the platonic ideal of pancakes.
Taste: I know you go into these things thinking “Well it’s a pancake Kit Kat, of course it’s going to taste like Pancakes”, but having tried over 60 different sorts of candy for this blog, I can tell you that what it says on the box isn’t always what you get on your taste buds, dig? So when I say “this is like a stack of pancakes in a finger of Kit Kat,” please realize what an amazing accomplishment this is! :)
As suggested by the scent, this is one buttery Kit Kat, perhaps my first ever! The buttery flavour and scent (and even texture, I think) make it the predominant taste, which is a bit surprising as it would seemingly be pretty easy to drown this in syrup and call it a day—but the flavour is really something special, I think. Of course they don’t skimp on sweetness, the secondary flavour is the syrup (tastes more like table syrup rather than maple, sadly), but it’s not cloying or over-the-top. It’s just perfect, and if there’s any standard white chocolate Kit Kat in there, I can’t taste it.
About 5 minutes after, the aftertaste isn’t ideal, but if anything it’s just enticement to have a second… or third… bar.
Verdict: Everything about this Kit Kat just straight up makes you smile; the overdesigned box, the bold character graphics, the surprising taste. All of it works together to create a chocolate that people would love to receive as a gift or as omiyage, would love to share, or even just to try. I’m so happy that, after near two months off of reviewing for the site (sorry!) I came back and got to try one of my favourite Kit Kats ever. If there’s one thing that’s not perfect about this, it’s that the Rilakkuma Hotcake Kit Kat is a limited edition, already off most store shelves in Japan, and many of you will never get to try just how awesome it is.
If you see it? Get it. If you can order it? Get on it. It’s one of the greatest members of the Japanese Kit Kat pantheon.
Okay, I’m definitely overselling it.
But still. Grab some.