Chocolate of the Day
Bresil (Brazil) Forastero 75% (bar)
Weight: 1.76 oz. (50 g.) / 3.5 oz. (100 g.) in total bar
Calories: 292.5 calories in 1/2 bar
Cost: $8.60 (estimate) (+ shipping) for 1 bar
Purchased from: Chocosphere.com (online order)
Welcome to Day #2 of Chocolate and Brazil Theme Week.
Today's Bresil (Brazil) Forastero* 75% (bar) was made by Francois Pralus (Roanne, France).
The aroma notes for this dark chocolate included: cocoa, fruit (dried apple, dried persimmon), butter, faint, warm spice (cinnamon, 5-spice blend with a hint of tangerine peel), and faint herb/green (sweet lemon balm, light green grass).
The Brazil 75% chocolate had a creamy melt and texture (a luscious quality almost all Pralus chocolates seem to share). This trait may be due to longer conching/grinding times** (resulting in smaller particle size and full incorporation of cocoa solids and fats), and added cocoa butter.
The chocolate flavor was quite pleasant and subtle complexity, and relatively civilized for being made using just a Forastero cacao variety. (A longer conching time can also tame certain notes.**)
The flavor notes included: chocolate (mocha brownie), with faint fruit (bright red apple and sweet, sun ripened blackberries) and a pleasant finish.
The cacao was from a plantation located in Itacare along the Rio de Contas (De Contas River), in northeastern Brazil (Bahia). The river water flows from "Chapada Diamantina" (a national park, with a name that means "Diamond Plateau").
This water contains alluvial diamonds and "bathes the Forastero cacao trees and creates precious cacao pods." Cacao Badaro has over a century of history. Diego Badaro is a fifth generation cacao farmer who helped introduce organic/biodynamic, environment-friendly agricultural practices to the region.
Maker's tasting notes read as follows: "Single plantation chocolate. Powerful nose, well-balanced, coffee, cocoa and woody (boises) aromas."
Ingredients: "75% cocoa, sugar, pure cocoa butter, GMO-free soya lecithin"
Allergen-related information: May contain traces of nuts or milk.
*Forastero (cacao variety) is associated with bold, hearty flavor(s), and is more disease-resistant, than say, the more delicate Criollo cacao variety. The robust Forastero leads in terms of cacao production worldwide.
** I have not visited Pralus chocolate makers. My comments here (about conching/grinding times) are speculations about processes, based on knowledge I've accumulated from past tours, tastings, interviews with makers and other research.