Saturday, November 10, 2018

Raphio Chocolate - 92% Chocolate Ecuador bar - Nov. 10, 2018

Chocolate of the Day: 

Raphio Chocolate 
92% Chocolate Ecuador bar
Good + - Good ++
Weight: 1.1 oz. (31.5 g.) / 2.2 oz. (63 g.) in total bar
Calories: 184 calories (per label) in 1/2 bar
Cost: $9.95 for 1 bar
Purchased from: ZombieRunner, Palo Alto, CA

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

Today's 92% Ecuador bar from Raphio Chocolate (Fresno, CA) had a rich chocolate aroma and a faint, very light molasses and spice note. This well-tempered bar broke with a hard snap and had a smooth creamy melt.

The chocolate had a smooth, even ultra dark chocolate flavor with a slight nuttiness and a hint of muted red fruit and and mocha. 

How did today's 92% Ecuador bar stack up against yesterday's 102% Ecuador bar by the same maker? Both were quite smooth and well balanced for ultra dark bars with interesting flavor complexity and no off notes. These bars may have been crafted from the same shipment of cacao beans. (Both had the same maker's tasting notes printed on the packaging: "macadamia nuts, malt, berry.")

Yesterday's 102% two-ingredient (organic cacao beans, organic cacao butter) bar offered more bitter flavor and sharper red fruit/berry notes than is 92% sibling (which also contained a small quantity of organic cane sugar). And today's 92% bar lacked the tiny bursts of authentic cacao flavor from the light sprinkle of roasted cacao nibs that adorned the back side of yesterday's 102% bar. (In fact, the nibs are what allowed the maker to exceed the 100% mark.)

Raphio offers a range of Ecuador bars, each with a different percentage of cocoa solids. I'm always grateful to makers who offer guideposts for learning like this—the best way to appreciate and learn about which chocolate you might like best is via interesting side-by-side tasting experiences.

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