Monday, April 17, 2017

SOMA Chocolatemaker - Easter Carrots - April 17, 2017

Easter Chocolate Item
April 2017

SOMA Chocolatemaker
Easter Carrots
Weight: .918 oz. (26 g.) in 2 carrots
Calories: 138 calories (estimate) in 2 carrots
Cost: $7.00 for 1 carrot
Purchased from: The Chocolate Garage, Palo Alto, CA

This post is a special post-Easter holiday entry.

These diminutive, foil-wrapped "carrots" from SOMA Chocolatemaker (Toronto, Canada) were flavored/colored with real carrots and blood orange—giving this Easter confection the advantage of having small amounts of Vitamin C and Vitamin A.

The sweet cocoa butter/white chocolate based carrots were cone-shaped and tasted like the real thing. They were even seasoned with a generous pinch of salt...raising an age old question. If this is made out of plants, can I count this as a vegetable?

Probably not, but these little orange beauties were beautiful to look at and fun to taste.

LetterPress Chocolate - La Red Dominican Republic 70% Dark bar - Apr. 17, 2017

Chocolate of the Day: 

LetterPress Chocolate LLC
La Red 2014 Harvest Dominican Republic 70% Dark Chocolate bar
Very Good
Weight: 1.15 oz. (32.5 g.)/ 2.3 oz. (65 g.) in total bar
Calories: 172 calories (estimate) in 1/2 bar
Cost: $11.00 for 1 bar
Purchased from: The Chocolate Garage, Palo Alto, CA

Welcome to Day #6 of Chocolate and the Dominican Republic Theme Week.

The spectrum of chocolate flavor notes in this week's group of Dominican Republic bars has been impressive, and shows what's possible when the best beans are artfully cultivated and processed at every step in the supply chain.

And today's La Red 2014 Harvest Dominican Republic 70% Dark Chocolate bar from LetterPress Chocolate LLC (Los Angeles, CA) was no exception. (La Red in English means the net, or the network. It was also the name of a co-op of family farms in the Dominican Republic that, until recently, supplied cacao to several chocolate makers in the U.S.)

The LetterPress Dominican Republic chocolate had notes of chocolate, molasses, and faint umami** as well as hints of green, fruit and nut. The bar had an even buttery melt with an uptick of satisfying butter flavor at the end.

While LetterPress Chocolate is a "new" maker to Chocolate Banquet, like almost all makers featured on this site, they've been honing their talents for years. It takes both left and right brain skills to be a successful chocolate maker. One needs to have discipline and heart; technical skills to optimize and fix machines; and packaging and design skills, to name a few.

In addition to hard work at farms, co-ops, fermentarys and makers, chocolate curators, retailers and other professionals give valuable feedback to makers. The end result was today's bar, another example of immaculate quality and packaging.

Thank you also to Sunita de Tourreil at The Chocolate Garage (Palo Alto, CA) for her continued high standards and helping to expand the availability of "happy chocolate" offerings.

**I love umami or savory flavors. I detected a very buttery, faintly smokey, sauteed mushroom note in this chocolate. And, while this may sound odd to some, the combined flavors including this one may make this a new favorite bar for me.
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