Sunday, May 10, 2020

Amedei - Chuao Cioccolato Fondente Extra 70% (bar) - May 10, 2020

Chocolate of the Day:

Amedei srl
Chuao Cioccolato Fondente Extra 70% (bar)
Good ++
Weight: 1.75 oz. (50 g.) in total bar
Calories: 280 calories in 1 bar
Cost: $14.50 for 1 bar
Purchased from:, online order

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

Today's Chuao Cioccolato Fondente Extra 70% (bar) was from Amedei srl (Pontedera (Pisa), Italy) and imported into the U.S. by DeMedici Imports (Elizabeth, NJ).

This bar had sweet chocolate (pudding), light chewing gum (similar to chicle*)/light green nut or seed, cereal/malt and naturally tart, sweet fruit notes with a well-balanced fruit acidity.

*It's possible that this "chicle-like" flavor note could have come from the packaging for this bar or from an external source picked up during the shipping or storage process. While not objectionable, it was somewhat unique.

Chicle is a latex, rubber-like sap from a Manilkara chicle tree used in the making of natural chewing gum.** Trees in the Manilkara genus also include the sapodilla tree (Manilkara zapote). Both trees are native to Mexico and Central America. Manilkara tropical evergreen trees have been cultivated in forests for centuries, and are used for their dark red wood, brownish plum-like fruit and for their sap. (Sadly some species are now endangered due to over-use and land clearing.)

**While the natural chicle that the Maya people would have harvested from trees and chewed thousands of years ago is still used in gum manufacturing, it has largely been replaced in today's chewing gum(s) by butadiene styrene rubber, a synthetic vinyl (e.g., poly vinyl acetate) or polyethylene gum base. Polymer chemistry at work.

Wm. Chocolate - Venezuela Porcelana 70% Dark bar - May 8, 2020

Chocolate of the Day: 

Wm. Chocolate
Venezuela Porcelana 70% Dark bar
Good ++ - Good +++
Weight: 2 oz. (57 g.) in total bar
Calories: 309 calories (estimate) in 1 bar
Cost: $7.95 for 1 bar
Purchased from:, online order

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

Today's unique Venezuela Porcelana 70% Dark bar was from Wm. Chocolate (Madison, WI).

This chocolate had an intriguing complexity to it. Do stop and smell the chocolate, slowly. And leave a segment or two for re-tasting later, as different aroma and flavor notes will emerge with this bar.

At first, I thought I picked up an aroma with sweet, almost spicy and very faint green tea notes. Minutes later, there were darker chocolate notes. Next sniff (less than 30 seconds later) yielded a very light sweet tobacco floral smokey note.

This chocolate had a very memorable, sweet chocolate flavor with very light caramel, nut and diffuse menthol notes. The flavor arc then landed on true chocolate, very light fruit (melon); and the bar had a light chocolate lingering finish. (Note: several hours later, after some food, it had dried fruit notes.)

Chocolate maker, William Marx, described this bar as "mellow and elegant and shapeshifting"...with notes of "chocolate milk, coconut and cantaloupe." Marx also included information about the prized Porcelana cacao from northwestern Venezuela that was used to make this bar, as well as pairing suggestions.

Porcelana cacao beans have a light color and gentle, complex flavors. Marx notes that Porcelana "lacks genes for producing a pigment that gives most cacao a dark color and bitter flavor."

He further explains: "...Evolution favors the pigment: its bitterness encourages monkeys and other mammals to spit out the cacao seeds, thereby planting more cacao trees. We're still not entirely sure whether Porcelana cacao trees once had genetics for the dark pigment, then lost them, or simply never had them at all..."

Marx's suggested food/wine pairing to enjoy with this bar read as follows: "one of the few chocolates that can be paired well with white wines; IPAs; white spirits; mild, creamy cheese."

*Ingredients: cocoa beans, certified organic whole cane sugar (origin: Costa Rica), certified organic cocoa butter.
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