Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Lydgate Farms Kauai Chocolate - Wailua Single Estate 70% Dark Palm Blossom Honey (bar) - Nov. 25, 2020

Chocolate of the Day

Lydgate Farms Kauai Chocolate
Wailua Single Estate 70% Dark Palm Blossom Honey (bar)
Good ++ - +++
Weight: 2.2 oz. (62 g.) in 1 bar
Calories: 330 calories (estimate) in 1 bar
Cost: $15.00 for 1 bar
Purchased from: Chocolate Covered, San Francisco, CA

Welcome to Chocolate and Hawaii Theme Week.

Today's Wailua Single Estate 70% Dark with Palm Blossom Honey (bar) was from Lydgate Farms Kauai Chocolate (Kapa'a, HI), an 8-acre cacao farm (that also produces vanilla, palm blossom honey and fruits).

The geographic coordinates of this farm in Kauai are: 22.0792 degrees North (Latitude) by 159.3595 degrees West (Longitude). Above 22 degrees Latitude is a bit outside of cacao's normal growing range. (Cacao grows up to 20 degrees above or below the Equator.) But the mild, tropical climate of this lush, green northern Hawaiian island works. 

The Big Island of Hawaii further south is at 19 to 20 degrees North. The benefit: cacao growing this far north typically contains 10-15 percent more cocoa butter (fat). (Think polar bears with nice thick coats to keep them warm.)

Today's 70% Wailua dark chocolate with palm blossom honey had a complex, pleasing parfait of flavors. It started with the aroma: dark, rich chocolate with notes of ripe date and fig cookie/bar. Each bite yielded a creamy smooth melt and mouthfeel. 

The unique and well-executed bar had a dark chocolate taste with a rich, layered sweetness (sugar and honey with depth), a round, faint green (fruit tree) note, and almost buttery rich honey flavors in the middle and finish. At the end of the finish there was a faint roasted nuts note (almond, walnut, peanut). This latter nutty note lingered long enough to evoke childhood memories of peanut butter, butter and honey on toast. 

Lydgate Farms tasting notes for this bar read as follows: "The additional honey added to this bar creates a paradox: while the honey makes the chocolate taste sweeter overall, it brings out deeper tones in the dark chocolate making it feel heavier. There are darker dried fruit tones than its plain dark chocolate counterpart from the same vintage. Hints of fig, raisins and spices show in the middle, while the sweet underbelly of the honey-tones present candied walnuts on the finish. Think baklava."

Lydgate Farms suggested beverage pairing notes were thus: "Pair With: Pedro Ximénez. Why? -- This would be a "like" pairing. The honey tones of the wine would match the honey tones in the chocolate. Both the chocolate and this Spanish dessert grape have heavy mouthfeels that can stand and sing together without overpowering one over the other."

Ingredients: Lydgate Farms cacao beans, organic sugar, organic cocoa butter. Lydgate Farms palm blossom honey

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