Monday, February 8, 2016

Ritter - Dark Chocolate Papua New Guinea bar - Feb. 8, 2016

Chocolate of the Day: 

Alfred Ritter GmbH and Co.
Ritter Sport Dark Chocolate - 50% Papua New Guinea bar
Good
Weight: 1.15 oz. (32.5 g.) / 2.3 oz. (65 g.) in total bar
Calories: 200 calories (estimate) in 1/2 bar
Cost: $9.99 for 1 box of 14 bars
Purchased from: Grocery Outlet Bargain Market, Palo Alto, CA

Today was Day #6 of Chocolate and Some Enchanted Islands Theme Week.

This Papua New Guinea single origin dark bar was from European chocolatier Ritter (Waldenbuch, Germany). The familiar square-ish, individually wrapped Ritter bars come in many flavors—the company's dark hazelnut chocolate bar being my favorite flavor I've tried so far. In most of these bars the country of origin (for the cacao) is not listed or specified.

It can be challenging for a high-volume company to create a single origin bar, as their needs might easily exceed the output of a single plantation. They may need to blend and balance cacao from multiple growers in a region or country. And, unlike smaller makers, larger makers often need to have more consistent (and less unique) flavor over a longer period of time.

Today's 50% cacao bar might be perfect if you have a craving for chocolate sweets. This bar smelled like a fresh batch of marshmallow chocolate fudge, and had that intense sweet, cocoa flavor as well.

There was a very subtle earthy and slightly artificial* flavor at the finish; but otherwise it was enjoyable. Ingredients: "sugar, chocolate liquor, cocoa butter, soy lecithin, natural flavor*"

Stay tuned, tomorrow we'll continue our virtual island voyage with another Papua New Guinea bar.

*It should be noted that the packaging for this bar stated that it was made with "natural ingredients."
I don't really know what "natural flavor" means in this case. Unfortunately, the broad phrases "all natural" and "natural ingredients" have been so over-used, they don't mean much if they're meant to reassure people looking to either include or exclude certain substances in food items. 





Chocolat Bonnat - Trinite 75% dark bar - Feb. 7, 2016

Chocolate of the Day: 

Chocolat Bonnat
Trinite dark chocolate bar
Good ++ - Very Good
Weight: 1.16 oz. (33.3 g.) / 3.5 oz. (100 g.) in total bar
Calories: 176 calories (estimate) in 1/3 bar
Cost: $8.95 (estimate) for 1 bar
Purchased from: Chocosphere (online order)

Today was Day #5 of Chocolate and Some Enchanted Islands Theme Week.

Today's bar was made with cacao grown in Trinidad (of Trinidad and Tobago). We're still in the Caribbean, but this two-island nation is located southeast of the DR (where we were yesterday)—closer to South America

Trinite is the French translation of Trinidad. The Trinite 75% Cacao bar was from French chocolatemaker, Chocolat Bonnat (Voiron, France).

I ordered this bar from Chocosphere. Their tasting notes for this bar included: "Bonnat Trinite 75% Bittersweet Chocolate bar... Bursting with the Antilles sunshine..., its flavor becomes more and more pronounced as the chocolate melts in your mouth. A "must" in the line of great cocoas. Kosher pareve..."

This Bonnat Trinite bar had a very pleasing chocolate aroma—with well-integrated cocoa, fruit, and island spice notes. The first taste was slightly "darker" than I expected, given the relatively light, sweet aroma, but gradually unfolded to have rounder, rich notes. Added cocoa butter gave the bar a slow, thick, creamy melt that may have made this unfolding more gradual.

Our next stop in our island-themed tour will be a few thousand miles west. So, imagine if you will that we're boarding a virtual private jet to fly over the Panama Canal, and across the great, wide Pacific Ocean, to taste two bars from Papua New Guinea over the next few days.





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