Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Cocoa Republic - Gran Couva 65% Dark Chocolate with Blue Mountain Coffee bar - May 22, 2018

Chocolate of the Day: 

Cocoa Republic
Single Origin Gran Couva 65% Dark Chocolate with Blue Mountain Coffee bar
Good
Weight: .5 oz. (15 g.) / 1 oz. (30 g.) (per label) in total bar
Calories: 88 calories in 1/2 bar
Cost: $3.99 for 1 bar
Purchased from: The Market, Palo Alto, CA

Welcome to Day #7 of Chocolate and Coffee Theme Week.

This Single Origin Gran Couva 65% Dark Chocolate with Blue Mountain Coffee (Jamaica) bar was from Cocoa Republic (Diego Martin, Trinidad and Tobago, West Indies).

The chocolate makers use only single origin Trinitario* cacao sourced from the Rainforest Alliance Certified, Montserrat Cocoa Farmers Cooperative Society in Trinidad and Tobago. And they make their chocolate "in country."

That is, the chocolate is made in the Caribbean island nation of Trinidad and Tobago (off the coast of northeast Venezuela), where the beans are grown, vs. shipping the beans to North America, Europe or elsewhere.

The Blue Mountain Coffee in this bar came from Jamaica.

Ingredients: Trinidadian cocoa beans, demerara brown sugar, organic cocoa butter, Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee, Non-GMO soy lecithin

The mindfully-sourced chocolate had a slight spice and cocoa aroma which carried over into the flavor. The coffee flavor was very light. It also had a faint taste of sour milk or mold in the piece that was tasted.

*Cocoa Republic described Trinitario cacao as follows: The Trinitario group represents a hybrid collection of types that arose in Trinidad from crossings between mixed Criollo and mixed Forastero types in the late 18th century. There are currently 11 commercial varieties grown in Trinidad and Tobago. This group took the best qualities from each parent plant, resulting in a healthy, sturdy plant with a robust “chocolate” flavour and a range of subtler secondary notes.


Monday, May 21, 2018

Charm School Chocolate - Coconut Milk Mocha bar - May 21, 2018

Chocolate of the Day: 

Charm School Chocolate
Coconut Milk Mocha bar
Good 
Weight: 1.05 oz. (30 g.) / 2.10 oz. (60 g.) in total bar
Calories: 158 calories in 1/2 bar
Cost: $13.00 for 1 bar
Purchased from: The Chocolate Garage, Palo Alto, CA

Welcome to Day #6 of Chocolate and Coffee Theme Week.

Today's Coconut Milk Mocha bar was from Maryland-based Charm School Chocolate.

Charm School Chocolate makes a line of bean-to-bar, non-dairy, soy free, vegan chocolate bars.

Today's award-winning (2018 Good Food Awards Winner) 47% cacao bar was made with Maya Mountain Cacao grown in Toledo, Belize* and flavored with coffee ("artfully roasted and blended by Quills Coffee, Louisville, KY").

This sweet bar had creamy texture and sweet coffee coconut caramel latte flavor. 

*The Toledo District of Belize is an area rich in cacao farming and cacao history, with Maya people still farming in the same area and style as they have been for centuries. Maya Mountain Cacao (a pioneer in direct trade cacao sourcing) buys beans directly from local farmers and sells quality cacao beans to chocolate makers.




Sunday, May 20, 2018

Taos Mountain Energy Bar - Pinon Coffee bar - May 20 , 2018

Chocolate of the Day: 

Taos Mountain Energy Bar
Pinon Coffee bar 
Good
Weight: 2.2 oz. (62 g.) in total bar
Calories: 309 calories in 1 bar
Cost: $2.99 (estimate) for 1 bar
Purchased from: REI, Mountain View, CA 

Welcome to Day #5 of Chocolate and Coffee Theme Week.
Today's Pinon Coffee Gluten Free Non GMO (bar) was created by Taos Mountain Energy Bar (Cuesta, NM).

This energy bar had a welcoming, natural coffee aroma, a soft seedy chew, and a rich, nutty, mocha flavor.* It was sweetened with coconut sugar and honey instead of sugar (thank you), and was much tastier than most mass-produced energy bars. It would be a great snack for a morning hike in the hills.

The company's bars are described as artisan-crafted and outdoor-inspired. And the packaging around today's bar contained a description of White Sands National Monument area in New Mexico.

*Ingredients: Almonds, honey, coconut sugar, pine nuts, dark chocolate, coffee, coconut oil, chia seeds, pure ground vanilla beans, sea salt.











Mars - Crunchy Espresso M&Ms - May 19, 2018

Chocolate of the Day: 

Mars
Crunchy Espresso MandMs
Good
Weight: 1 oz. (28 g.) / 8 oz. (226.8 g.) in total package
Calories: 140 calories in 1 serving
Cost: $4.99 for 1 package
Purchased from: Safeway, Palo Alto, CA

Welcome to Day #4 of Chocolate and Coffee Theme Week.

Just when we thought we'd sampled every flavor in the pantheon of MandM's chocolate candies, along came today's Crunchy Espresso MandMs from Mars (Hackettstown, NJ).

As the name implied the fillings, inside the candy-coated exterior shells, were lighter, crispier and crunchier than those of classic MandM chocolate candies with a solid milk chocolate core.

The coffee flavor was very mild. These candies included artificial flavors and colorings and may contain gluten (barley malt extract).




Stone Grindz - Coffee and Coconut Milk 55% bar - May 18, 2018

Chocolate of the Day: 

Stone Grindz Chocolate
Coffee and Coconut Milk 55% bar
Good +
Weight: 1 oz. (28.3 g.) / 2 oz. (56.6 g.) in total bar
Calories: 150 calories (estimate) in 1/2 bar
Cost: $7.99 (estimate) for 1 bar
Purchased from: Stone Grindz, online order

Welcome to Day #3 of Chocolate and Coffee Theme Week.

Coffee and Coconut Milk 55% bar from Stone Grindz Chocolate (Scottsdale, AZ).

A smooth dark coconut "milk" chocolate base (cacao beans, cane sugar*, cacao butter*) was suffused a slight textural and flavor oomph from ground coffee.

The coconut milk alternative appeals to vegans and others who might like a very subtle rich hint of flavor from coconut. (Some who I shared this with did not taste any coconut, so fear not coconut non-likers.)

Stone Grindz is a small batch chocolate maker. (This bar was labeled "Batch #280" along with an "enjoy by" date.)
beans shipped to the makers workshop in Scottsdale, AZ

*An asterisk denotes an organic ingredient here.




Friday, May 18, 2018

Wild Ophelia - Cold Brew Chocolate Coffee Bites 70% - May 17, 2018

Chocolate of the Day: 

Vosges IP LLC
Wild Ophelia Cold Brew Chocolate Coffee Bites
Good +
Weight: 1.39 oz. (39 g.) in total package of 4 pieces
Calories: 190 calories in 4 pieces (1 package)
Cost: $2.99 (estimate) for 1 package
Purchased from: Grocery Outlet Bargain Market, Palo Alto, CA

Welcome to Day #2 of Chocolate and Coffee Theme Week.

Today's Wild Ophelia Cold Brew Chocolate Coffee Bites were related to/created by Vosges IP LLC (Chicago, IL).

I needed a pick-me up this morning. And this confectionery blend of 70% dark chocolate and a sweet, ebony-colored, flowing coffee caramel center did the trick. Bzzzzzzz.






Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Perfect Bar - Mocha Chip bar - May 16, 2018

Chocolate of the Day: 

Perfect Bar, LLC
Mocha Chip bar
Good+ - Good ++
Weight: 2.2 oz. (62 g.) in total bar
Calories: 330 calories in 1 bar
Cost: $2.99 in 1 bar
Purchased from: The Market, Palo Alto, CA

Time to wake up. It's Day #1 of Chocolate and Coffee Theme Week.

Today's caffeinated Mocha Chip bar from Perfect Bar, LLC (San Diego, CA) was chock full of organic ingredients, including dark chocolate and coffee.

The line of (refrigerated) bars from this family-inspired company sampled so far have been quite good. Very satisfying.

Normally, a long list of ingredients in a bar is not encouraging. However, the list for this protein bar was all good, and helped explain why this bar was such a satisfying mini-meal. Nut butters and high-nutrient plant-based organic powders helped. Coffee and dark chocolate added rich flavor/depth. Natural-tasting, and not too sweet (thank you!).

Ingredients: 
Organic peanut butter, organic almond butter, organic honey, organic nonfat dry milk, organic, Fair Trade Certified dark chocolate (organic chocolate, organic cane sugar, organic cocoa butter, organic sunflower lecithin), organic cocoa, organic ground coffee, organic dried whole egg powder, organic rice protein, organic vanilla extract, organic flax seed oil, organic sunflower oil, organic sesame seed oil, organic olive oil, organic pumpkin seed oil, dried whole food powders (organic kale, organic flax seed, organic rose hip, organic orange, organic lemon, organic papaya, organic tomato, organic apple, organic alfalfa, organic celery, organic kelp, organic dulse, organic carrot, organic spinach)





Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Sprouts - Organic Cacao Nibs - May 15, 2018

Chocolate of the Day:

Sprouts Farmers Market
Organic Cacao Nibs 
Good +
Weight: 1 TB (14 g.) / 8 oz. (226 g.) in total bar
Calories: 90 calories in 1 Tablespoon
Cost: $ missing information
Purchased from: Sprouts Farmers Market, Mountain View, CA
Welcome to Day #7 of Chocolate and Peru Theme Week.

These Organic Cacao Nibs were manufactured exclusively for Sprouts Farmers Market (Phoenix, AZ). If you really like chocolate, but aren't wild about sugar, give cacao (or cocoa) nibs a try.

Nibs are the essence of (and the raw material for) chocolate—before cacao beans are ground to a paste and before sugar or other ingredients are added. Their exact flavor depends on their origin, harvest year and fermentation process they went through in their country of origin.

Today's crunchy cacao bean bits came from a blend of countries, including Peru (Peru, Guatemala, Dominican Republic and Ecuador). They had rich, uniform, true chocolate flavor (think brownies).

And speaking of brownies, nibs like this would super-charge a batch of your favorite brownies or other chocolate baked goods. They would help balance the sugar level a bit in chocolate, chocolate chip cookies. And they would be great over vanilla ice cream, or just about anything else.


Monday, May 14, 2018

Skout Backcountry LLC - Peruvian Chocolate Organic Energy Bar - May 14, 2018

Chocolate of the Day: 

Skout Backcountry LLC
Peruvian Chocolate Organic Energy Bar
Good
Weight: 1.3 oz. (27 g.) in total bar
Calories: 150 calories in 1 bar
Cost: $2.99 (estimate) for 1 bar
Purchased from: REI, Mountain View, CA

Welcome to Day #6 of Chocolate and Peru Theme Week.

Today's Peruvian Chocolate Organic Energy bar was from Skout Backcountry LLC (Portland, OR). 
It's not often you see energy bars with single origin chocolate. But today's bar boldly announced its Peruvian roots. This Energy Bar contained only five ingredients* and the chocolate came from "ethically sourced, premium organic Peruvian cocoa."

Pressed dates in this energy bar provided chewiness, moistness and ample sweetness (a little date sweetness goes a long way). Cocoa helped make the flavor richer and more full-bodied.

Craft chocolate, and energy bars like this, have helped power local hikes in the East Bay Regional Parks this past month. Wonderful to enjoy green hills this late in spring this past weekend.

*Ingredients: Organic Dates, Organic Almonds, Organic Peruvian Chocolate, Organic Pumpkin Seeds, Himalayan Sea Salt 

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Vanini - Dark Chocolate 62% Pear and Cinnamon bar - May 13, 2018

Chocolate of the Day: 

Vanini
Dark Chocolate 62% Pear and Cinnamon bar
Good
Weight: 1.41 oz. (40 g.) / 3.5 oz. (100 g.) in total bar
Calories: 242 calories in 2/5 bar
Cost: $3.79 for 1 bar
Purchased from: The Market, Palo Alto, CA 

Welcome to Day #5 of Chocolate and Peru Theme Week.

Dark Chocolate 62% Pear and Cinnamon bar from Vanini *(Orsenigo (CO), Italy).

This bar had smooth dark flavor suffused with a natural hint of pear steeped in a touch of cinnamon.

The cacao used to make Vanini bars was sourced from "carefully selected plantations in the Bagua District of Amazonas, a region in Peru known for its ancient cacao."

*The Vanini brand is part of ICAM SpA




White Label Chocolate - Peru Ucayali 80% bar - May 12, 2018

Chocolate of the Day: 

White Label Chocolate
Peru Ucayali 80% bar
Good +
Weight: 1.148 oz. (32.5 g.) / 2.29 oz. (65 g.) in total bar
Calories: 172 calories (estimate) in 1/2 bar
Cost: $10.00 (estimate) for 1 bar
Purchased from: Mutari Chocolate, Santa Cruz, CA

Welcome to Day #4 of Chocolate and Peru Theme Week.
This Peru Ucayali 80% bar was from White Label Chocolate (Santa Cruz, CA)

This ultra dark bar had a balanced, complex and interesting tasting art. The chocolate had a slight green aroma, dark chocolate fudge-y and earth notes, with hints of dried fruit.

There was a very slight graininess in the tail end, but the texture was smooth otherwise.

The cacao used to make this bar was grown in Peru from a 2016 Harvest. The Ucayali region is in the Amazon rainforest area of inland Peru.




Friday, May 11, 2018

Map Chocolate Co. - Mystic Eye Finca Estela 45% dark milk Champurrado style (bar) - May 11, 2018

Chocolate of the Day:

Map Chocolate Co.
Mystic Eye - Finca Estela Peru 45% dark milk Champurrado style with blue corn (bar)
Good - Good+
Weight: 1.25 oz. (35 g.) / 2.5 oz. (70 g.) in total bar
Calories: 188 calories in 1/2 bar
Cost: $12.00 for 1 bar
Purchased from: Chocolate Covered, San Francisco, CA
Welcome to Day #3 of Chocolate and Peru Theme Week.

Today's Mystic Eye - Finca Estela Peru 45% dark milk Champurrado* style (bar) from Map Chocolate Co. (Eugene, OR).

Finca (Santa) Estela—the farm/estate where the cacao (likely Criollo/Trinitario) used to make this bar was grown—is located in the Villa Rica district in Central Peru.

Below are notes and observations about this bar:

  • Appearance: Light in color
  • Aroma: light spice and toasted cake notes
  • Flavor: milk chocolate with a spicy (chili) kick
  • Texture: somewhat grainy, due to ground, organic blue corn bits
  • Finish: sweet milk chocolate with faint fruity cacao note emerging through the burn; with delayed authentic blue corn flavor (after chili subsided) and chewy corn bits
For more on the story behind the name "Mystic Eye," make sure to read the insert by MAP founder, chocolate maker and storyteller, Mackenzie Rivers. Spoiler: it involves a grueling hike in the Grand Canyon.

*Champurrado style hot chocolate in Mexico is made with cacao and atole/corn, with spices and chile.






Thursday, May 10, 2018

Elements Truffles - Sea Salt Turmeric 70% Cacao - May 10, 2018

Chocolate of the Day: 

Elements Truffles
Sea Salt infused with Turmeric 70% Cacao
Good - Good +
Weight: 1 oz. (56 g.) / 2 oz. (56 g.) (per label) in total bar
Calories: 130 calories (estimate) in 1/2 bar
Cost: $6.59 for 1 bar
Purchased from: The Market, Palo Alto, CA

Welcome to Day #2 of Chocolate and Peru Theme Week. 

Today's Ayurveda inspired* cacao offering was a Sea Salt infused with Turmeric 70% Cacao (bar) from Elements Truffles (Kearny, NJ).  

This bar (and all Elements Truffles dark bars sampled to date) have a soft texture/bite and are gently sweetened not with sugar, but local honey. And each one has been infused with different flavor elements in a base of smooth flavored cacao (and with Peruvian Criollo cocoa butter).

Today's bar was lightly salted and seasoned with sea salt and turmeric.

Ingredients: Organic Raw Cacao Butter (Peruvian Criollo); Raw Honey; Organic Raw Cacao Powder; Organic Turmeric Root Powder (from India); Sea Salt (from a family farm in Greece).

*Statements on the bar's packaging read: "Turmeric helps balance - Vata, Pitta and Kapha—all three doshas." And, "Curcumin in turmeric stimulates the body's own antioxidant mechanism and also helps delay aging."


Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Labooko Schokoladen - Peru 100 percent bar - May 9, 2018

Chocolate of the Day: 

Labooko Schokoladen Manufaktur GmbH
100 percent bar
Good +
Weight: 1.148 oz. (32.5 g.) / 2.29 oz. (65 g.) in total package of two bars
Calories: 206 calories (per label) in 1/2 package (1 bar)
Cost: $9.00 for 1 package of two bars
Purchased from: Chocolate Covered, San Francisco, CA

Welcome to Day #8 of 100% Cacao Theme Week, and Day #1 of Chocolate and Peru Theme Week.

What can we observe about today's 100 percent bar from Labooko Schokoladen (Riegersburg, Austria)? It comes from bean-to-bar chocolatemakers who have demonstrated skill and originality in the many different bars they've created.

The packaging is a bit scary. Some 100% cacao bars can be dark and foreboding, and tasting one for the first time can shock delicate tastebuds, like one's first shot of espresso might taste as a child. But then these robust flavors grow on you over time.

We also know that this package contained a matched set of two bars, crafted with organic, fairtrade cacao grown in Peru.
Tasting observations:
  • The aroma: ultra dark chocolate, dried fruit, slight green, wood, spice notes 
  • The texture: creamy melt
  • The flavor: even, ultra dark, balanced bitterness, roasted dried fruit, with a hint of roasted nut butter
  • The finish: lingering but surprisingly smooth
This might be the chocolate served at the devil's barbeque party. Not charred or smokey, but imbued with deep roasted flavor, forged by some skilled craftsmen, this chocolate, as the makers note "is not for wimps."

The cacao was conched for 34 hours (a long time by cacao conching standards) to arrive at its relative smoothness. And yet it retained enough "original, raw and wild" flavor characteristics to be interesting and not bland. It took experienced hands to make this work.

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Akesson's - Madagascar Bejofo Estate 100% Criollo bar - May 8, 2018

Chocolate of the Day:

Akesson's Organic, Ltd.
Madagascar Bejofo Estate 100% Criollo Cocoa bar
Good +++
Weight: 1.06 oz. (30 g.) / 2.12 oz. (60 g.) in total bar
Calories: 182.7 (per label) calories in 1/2 bar
Cost: $13.00 for 1 bar
Purchased from: The Chocolate Garage, Palo Alto, CA

Welcome to Day #7 of 100% Cacao Theme Week.

This bar had a rather heavenly aroma for an ultra-dark bar, with sweet cream, ripe mild fruit and caramel notes. It also had an ultra-creamy texture and melt.

This chocolate had pleasing complex Criollo cacao flavor infused with a slightly bitter edge and a mild creamy aftertaste—that faded quickly and politely for a 100 percent bar.

If you want to sample a rare 100% cacao bar that is more light and fragrant flower than sledgehammer, try this one.


Monday, May 7, 2018

Middlebury Chocolates - 100% Dark Chocolate bar - May 7, 2018

Chocolate of the Day: 

Middlebury Chocolates 
100 - one hundred percent dark chocolate bar
Good ++
Weight: 1 oz. (28.3 g.) / 2 oz. (57 g.) in total bar
Calories: 150 calories (estimate) in 1/2 bar
Cost: $10.00 for 1 bar
Purchased from: Chocolate Covered, San Francisco, CA 

Welcome to Day #6 of 100% Cacao Theme Week.

Today's smooth 100% one hundred percent dark chocolate bar from Middlebury Chocolates (Middlebury, VT) was very approachable for an ultra-dark bar.

It had slight green and deep cocoa notes in the aroma, and was well executed and even—with no "off" flavors. The maker's Tasting Notes read: "Creamy, Bold and Intense."

This 100% bar contained a "thoughtful blend of Dominican Republic, Tanzania and Guatemala" Direct Trade cacao beans; and all three of the major cacao varieties were represented: Trinitario, Criollo and Forestaro.

Like most successful chocolatemakers, the folks behind Middlebury Chocolates are dedicated to the details of their craft. Information supplied on the bar packaging, contained a wealth of information about some of the steps taken to create a great bar:
  • Fermentation: 4-7 days; Mostly sun dried
  • Roast Level: Medium
  • Refined: 72 hours at 100 degrees F
  • Conched: 24 hours at 145 degrees F

Sunday, May 6, 2018

Bisou Chocolate - Noir Coco Brus 100% Cacao Dark Chocolate bar - May 6, 2018

Chocolate of the Day:

Bisou Chocolate
Noir Coto Brus 100% Dark Chocolate bar
Good - Good +
Weight: .5 oz. (15 g.) / 1 oz. (30g.) (per label) in total bar
Calories: 76 calories (estimate) in 1/2 bar
Cost: $6.25 (estimate) for 1 bar
Purchased from: Bisou Chocolate online order

Welcome to Day #5 of 100% Cacao Theme Week.

Today's attractively designed and packaged Noir Coto Brus 100% Cacao Dark Chocolate bar from Bisou Chocolate (Oakland/Berkeley, CA) had compelling, smooth dark chocolate flavor with well-balanced bitter notes, and relatively creamy texture.

The ultra-dark bar bar lacked sharp or sour fruit notes contained in some 100% bars; and approachability is important when it comes to 100 percent bars. The chocolate did have a relatively smooth and mild, ultra-dark finish with a very faint wax note.

The cacao beans for this bar came from Coto Brus, located the province of Puntarenas, Costa Rica.




Saturday, May 5, 2018

Ritual Chocolate - 100% Cacao bar + Mexico Soconusco 75% bar - May 5, 2018

Chocolate(s) of the Day: 

Ritual Chocolate 

One Hundred Percent Pure Cacao 100% Cacao (bar)
Good++
Weight: 1.06 oz. (30 g.) / 2.12 oz. (60 g.) in total bar
Calories: 161 calories (estimate) in 1/2 bar
Cost: $13.00 in 1 bar
Purchased from: The Chocolate Garage, Palo Alto, CA

Mexican Soconusco 75% (bar)
Good ++
Weight: 1.06 oz. (30 g.) / 2.12 oz. (60 g.) in total bar
Calories: 161 calories (estimate) in 1/2 bar
Cost: $14.00 for 1 bar
Purchased from: The Chocolate Garage, Palo Alto, CA

Welcome to Day #4 of 100% Cacao Theme Week. And, Happy Cinco de Mayo.*

Today we've featured two, attractively packaged, dark bars from Ritual Chocolate (Park City, UT): one 100% cacao blend ultra dark bar and a second single origin, Mexico, Soconusco 75% cacao dark bar. 

One Hundred Percent 100% bar
Ritual Chocolate's100% bar was made with a blend of cacaos from "around the world."
Tasting notes: fruity, earthy, cacao.

The aroma: chocolate (baked brownie) with fleeting, faint green note. This bar had a smooth melt and flavor with a sour fruit spike about 2/3 in, and a smoother aftertaste than most 100%ers.

Mexico 75% bar
Since it is El Cinco de Mayo,* this Mexico Soconusco 75% Cacao bar from Ritual Chocolate is also featured today.

This second bar was made with cacao from the Rayen Cooperative, located in the Soconusco region of the state of Chiapas, that shares a border with Guatemala. This region has a long cacao history, likely beginning with the Olmec and Mokaya peoples. Later the Aztecs cultivated and consumed cacao in this area.

The aroma of this bar had hints of spice and drinking chocolate. The unique flavor had savory spice (light cumin, saffron) and nutty notes. The maker's tasting notes: nutty, woody, chocolate flavor with a bit of citrus. All these flavors came from just three ingredients: cacao, organic cane sugar, organic cocoa butter.

*Cinco de Mayo, or the 5th of May, celebrates a victory of the Mexican people/army over Napoleon's army in the mid 1800s. Celebrations around this date have grown over time to encompass a broader celebration of Mexican food and drink in the U.S.

Friday, May 4, 2018

Arete Fine Chocolate - 100% Guatemala Lachua Microlot Dark Chocolate bar - May 4, 2018

Chocolate of the Day: 

Arete Fine Chocolate
100% Guatemala Lachua Microlot Dark Chocolate bar
Good +++
Weight: 1.15 oz. (32.5 g.) / 2.3 oz. (65 g.) in total bar
Calories: 184 calories (estimate) in 1/2 bar
Cost: $11.00 (estimate) for 1 bar
Purchased from: The Chocolate Garage, Palo Alto, CA 

Welcome to Day #3 of 100% Cacao Theme Week.
Today's 100% Guatemala Lachua Microlot Dark Chocolate bar from Arete Fine Chocolate* was one of the most approachable 100% bars you'll find.

The bar had a pleasant aroma with dried fruit and faint molasses notes and a creamy melt and texture. The ultra dark chocolate flavor was smooth with very light and well balanced bitter notes and aftertaste with a flicker of high-end green tea.

*Arete Fine Chocolate owners David and Leslie Senk, are moving their company from Milpitas, CA to Tennessee and will re-open mid-2018 in their new location, with a freshly minted chocolate for sale, at that time.







Thursday, May 3, 2018

Slitti Cacao Pregiati - GranCacao 100% bar - May 3, 2018

Chocolate of the Day:

Slitti Cacao Pregiati
GranCacao 100% bar
Good - Good +
Weight: .583 oz. (16.6 g.) / 3.5 oz. (100 g.) in total bar
Calories: 99 calories (per label) calories in 1/6 of bar
Cost: $11.00 for 1 bar
Purchased from: Chocolate Covered, San Francisco, CA

Welcome to Day #2 of 100% Cacao Theme Week.

Today's GranCacao 100% bar was made in Italy by Slitti Cacao Pregiati (Tuscany, Italy) using a "blend of fine cocoas originating from Central America."

This soy and gluten free, ultra-dark bar had an aroma and flavor, with slight bitter, sour and earth notes, characteristic of many 100% cacao bars. However, it was a bit smoother than some other 100%ers.

I thought this relative smoothness (by 100% standards) might be due to a nicer blend of beans and some extra cocoa butter, but it was difficult to tell; the ingredient information listed only "100% cocoa mass").

This 100% cacao bar had a lingering aftertaste (100% cacao that can "stun" our taste buds for a minute or two) and a slight green note at the tail end, after about 30+ seconds.









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