Thursday, March 14, 2013

Congo Vanilla Nib bar - March 14, 2013

Chocolate of the Day:

Theo Chocolate
Congo Vanilla Nib bar
Good - Good +
Weight: 1 oz. (28 g.) in 1/3 bar / 3 oz. (84 g.) in 1 bar
Calories: 133 calories in 1/3 bar
Cost: $3.99 for 1 bar
Purchased from: Whole Foods, Los Altos, CA

Today was Day #2 of Chocolate and Vanilla Theme Week.

Theo Chocolate (Seattle, WA) produced this Congo Vanilla Nib dark chocolate (65% cacao) bar as part of an Eastern Congo Initiative (ECI). (Bar packaging included a word from ECI founder, Ben Affleck.) Part of the proceeds of this bar go toward supporting farmers and sustainable farming practices in this large, but conflict-affected nation that is the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Theo Chocolate and ECI teamed up with Congolese cocoa farmers to make this fair trade chocolate offering. The resulting bar included roasted cacao nibs, and ground vanilla bean pieces from the Rhenzori Mountains in Eastern Congo.

The bar was a mix of smooth dark chocolate and crunchy textures (from the roasted cacao nibs and the vanilla bean pieces), with creamy and smoky flavor notes.

The vanilla taste was partially obscured by the dark chocolate, but added a mellow complement to this richer, slightly more acidic base. There were a few crunchy bits that were roughly textured (not as coarse as particles in stone-ground chocolate, but getting there); however, overall the flavors and textures were fairly well balanced.

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