REVIEW: Ben & Jerry’s One Sweet World

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Eating ice cream always feels good in my mouth, but if it can also feel good in my heart, I think I’m truly winning the game of life. Always pushing the envelop for fair trade practice, social justice, and general good-spirited vibes, Ben & Jerry’s latest limited batch asks us to question the recent racial injustices and divide in the United States with One Sweet World.

The idea behind the flavor is that the world is sweetest when we all stand together as one, and a portion of the sales from the pints will go to support organizations trying to put an end to the divide that’s been building in our country over the last tumultuous year. While it’s only a mere baby step in the right direction, coffee caramel ice cream with fudge chunks and swirls and salted caramel and marshmallow sounds like a pretty good starting point for people to put their differences aside and enjoy some deliciousness as one.

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Ben & Jerry’s tend to bring a big boost of fun factor mix-ins to most of their creations, but what really tends to make or break the success of a given flavor is the quality of the base, and I’m very happy to report this coffee caramel ice cream is great. It has a rich velvety texture with luscious density that makes for a very solid and decadent foundation. The balance between coffee and caramel is pretty spot on – emulating a sweet and heavily milked cup of joe. There’s a bit of bitterness that comes through, just enough to temper the bold sugary presence without pushing it over the edge for those who might be adverse to stronger espresso notes. It’s not the best coffee base I’ve ever had but I definitely prefer it to their standard caramel from the terrific Cinnamon Buns.

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Call me crazy, but when B&J’s fudge chunks are in the form of shapes and not just chunks they taste way better, and the ampersand’s here are no exception. The little and-sign fudge chunks taste and feel identical to the awesome peace signs from One Love and have the same perfect snap-then-melt sensation that makes them a wonderful mix-in. Their density gives them a great little crunch followed by a smooth and creamy finish with bittersweet cocoa notes that compliment the caramel and coffee notes in the ice cream perfectly.

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The double swirl action of salted caramel and marshmallow kick the sweetness and ooey-gooey-ness into overdrive with ample ribbons of joy. The marshmallow has a fluffy density to it that makes it really stand out, while the caramel adds a soupy dollop of sugar to the top of the profile. For my taste the caramel isn’t that salty, and in the context of all the other sweet components I wish it was a bit saltier or darker to bring some extra depth to the pint, but there’s no denying it’s tasty. I have yet to see B&J really come aggressively with a more complex caramel, and if it’s going to be called salted I want something to pop and cut through all the creaminess.

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One Sweet World is essentially the Ben & Jerry’s classic Phish Food with a coffee caramel base instead of chocolate, which makes for an overall more dynamic eating experience. The components are all executed well, packed densely into the container, and if you are ready for a very sweet scoop with a touch of complexity, this is one that will not let you down.

Rating: 8.5/10

Found at: Target ($4.99)

 

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