With an elegant French name like that, we knew we were in for something special!

Pocky, as you may know, is a tasty pretzel stick covered in chocolate, but like Kit-Kat, it’s known to come out with a large variety of unique and delightful flavors. Some are a tribute to traditional Japanese flavors, such as pure matcha green tea. Others offer a culinary adventure by incorporating local flavors from regions all across Japan, and still others offer very mature flavors that are meant to be enjoyed by adults, like one that pairs well with wine.

The latest addition to the Pocky family, the limited-time Bâton d’or La Recolte Pocky, falls under the third category. We at SoraNews24 have tried many a Pocky flavor, but none have been so luxurious, so magnificent, and (ahem) so expensive as this. While an ordinary box of Pocky can cost from 200 to 400 yen (US$1.78 to $3.56) and usually contains 20-40 sticks, depending on the flavor, a box of Bâton d’or La Recolte, with only eight sticks, retails for 1,051 yen ($9.36). At 130 yen ($1.16) per stick, we had to find out what these taste like!

So we scrounged up all of our sofa change and emptied our piggy banks, and elected our best-dressed representative to go and purchase one box of each flavor.

The name of the Bâton d’or La Recolte Pocky, a “Premium Sweets Stick for Adults”, comes from the name of the chain of specialty sweets shops where this special Pocky is sold, Bâton d’or, and the French word “recolte”, which means “harvest”. To match the name, Pocky maker Glico and Bâton d’or teamed up to make a fruity lineup: Macadamia & Orange, and Walnut & Raspberry.

Without even trying the Pocky, we can tell that this will be an elegant experience simply by looking at the package. While normal Pocky boxes are rectangular, blocky, and painted in bright colors, these boxes are sleek, black with pink or orange accents, long, and even curved. The very design of the box speaks volumes about the quality and luxury of the product.

After admiring the sophisticated exterior, it was time to examine the interior. Upon opening the box, we found 4 packets containing just two sticks each. What extravagance! After carefully opening the packets, we found that it took an unexpected amount of effort to pick up one stick, as they’re quite heavy for sticks of Pocky.

After we carefully tested the weight and examined the texture of each stick, we allowed ourselves the first bite. A common flavor between the two varieties that we agreed upon was rich, buttery pretzel flavor. It appears that butter was carefully kneaded into the dough, allowing it to be neither too moist nor too dry. It’s as if the melted better was allowed to soak into the pretzel, giving it an undeniable high-class aroma and flavor.

Coating this deliciously buttery pretzel cookie is chocolate, made from a Bâton d’or La Recolte Pocky-exclusive recipe, packed tightly with bits of fruit and nuts. The Macadamia & Orange variety was slightly bitter with its orange component, but that matched splendidly with the sweetness of the chocolate.

On the other hand, with the first bite of the Walnut & Raspberry, a bright flavor of raspberries fills your mouth. The sweet-and-sour taste of the raspberries coupled with the crunchy walnuts makes for a very enjoyable texture.

Both definitely offer a mature flavor. Even if they are “snacks”, it seems an awful waste to give this Pocky to children. Paired with your favorite coffee or tea, this Pocky is best eaten slowly, to really enjoy the complexity of its composition.

Although we’re used to cheaply and easily buying Pocky from convenience stores and supermarkets, this is a special kind of Pocky that we wouldn’t mind waiting in line for. It’s not often that we get to indulge in something so fancy! It’s not sold in the Kanto Region, but you can buy it at four Bâton d’or locations in western Japan (Hankyu Umeda in Osaka, Takashimaya Osaka, Takashimaya Kyoto, and Fukuoka Hakata). After already buying two boxes we can’t afford a trip to Osaka to get more, but now that we’ve tried them we’d be very happy to receive them as a souvenir (hint hint).

Meanwhile we’ll continue experimenting with cheap but unique foods that meet our peasant budget, like the more bang-for-your-buck convenience store Black Hole fried chicken.

Related: Bâton d’or location list
Images ©SoraNews24

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