We can’t believe it’s not butter, and that it’s actually chocolate-y goodness!

Tirol chocolate is a must-have staple in any Japanese candy fan’s collection. The iconic chocolate squares have been a part of Japanese confectionary aisles for over 50 years, and during that time, Tirol have wowed us with some… creative flavours like eel and curry. This time they’ve gone with a much more appealing sounding taste, though — butter mochi.

Butter flavoured chocolate is enjoying a surge in popularity at the moment, so when our Japanese reporter Saya Togashi came across a box of Butter Mochi chocolates in her local branch of Japanese megastore Don Quijote, she assumed Tirol had jumped on the buttery trend, too. But on closer inspection, these didn’t appear to be just your run of the mill butter chocolates, but a collaboration with Hokunyu, a dairy company based in Hokkaido Prefecture, which is known for its dairy products. One of their famous products, Hokkaido Butter, comes in a package that looks like this:

▼ Here’s the Tirol Butter Mochi chocolates, which cost 321 yen (US$2.64)

The packaging similarities don’t end there, though — inside the box are 12 individually wrapped chocolates, that also have some familiar packaging…

▼ They look like little packets of butter, but don’t be fooled — they’re chocolate!

And as an extra sweet detail, the chocolate wrappers have a mini map of Hokkaido on the back. Tirol’s chocolates always come in cute packaging, and these are no different!

▼ A buttery Hokkaido outline

So the wrappers and packaging definitely passed the butter check for our reporter, but how did they taste? Saya unwrapped one eagerly and was met with a butter-y coloured chocolate on the inside. Her mouth already began to water as she imagined how it would taste — should she be popping it in her mouth or spreading it on some fresh toast?

But while butter flavoured chocolates are somewhat commonplace these days, these chocolates were butter mochi flavoured. 

And while butter mochi is perhaps more associated with Hawaii, here in Japan it’s a famous specialty from Akita Prefecture. It’s made by adding a generous amount of butter to rice before it’s pounded into mochi, and is said to have been eaten by the Matagi people, traditional winter hunters based in the northern regions of Japan.

Real butter mochi has a soft, fluffy texture, and Tirol recreated this by adding some gummy candy to the centre of their chocolate.

Tirol’s gummy mochi, while quite different in texture to real butter mochi, is chewy and addictive, and Saya reckons it was a perfect match for the creamy, buttery chocolate on the outside. The thick, gummy centre meant that Saya spent more time chewing the chocolate than she would have a normal Tirol, so it felt like it was a lot bigger than a regular Tirol, even though they were the same size.

Tirol have brought out some delicious chocolates in the past, but for the most part they tend to be a ‘one or two at a time’ chocolate. Maybe you’ll pop a square on a co-worker’s desk when you walk past, or bring in a box to share with your friends. Saya equates them to an old friend from school whom you don’t really keep in touch with — sure, they’re nice enough when you see them once in a while, but you tend to forget about them the next day.

But the butter mochi Tirol was a different story, and Saya quickly made her way through the whole box in one sitting. They were definitely more than an ‘old friend’; in fact, Saya decided they were easily the most delicious Tirols she had ever tasted.

The butter mochi Tirols went on sale on March 8, and like the eel and curry versions before it, are a limited-time only flavour; once they’re gone, they’re gone. Anyone wishing to try what Saya describes as ‘the most delicious Tirol she’s had in her entire life’, get yourself to your local branch of Don Quijote, or affiliated stores.

And if Tirol are looking for any follow-up flavours and still want to ride the butter train, we’ve got a pretty out-there recommendation for them — sea urchin butter!

Photos ©SoraNews24
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