Tuesday, August 31, 2021

Disidente - Pina (Pineapple) Colombian Craft Chocolate (bar) - Aug. 31, 2021

Chocolate of the Day

(Cacao) Disidente
Colombian Cacao Taxonomy
(Manufactured by El Colaboratorio)
Pina (Pineapple)
Good +
Weight: 1.41 oz. (40 g.) in total bar
Calories: 191 calories in 1 bar
Cost: $6.50 for 1 bar
Purchased from: Bar and Cocoa, online order

Welcome to Day #1 of Chocolate and Colombia Theme Week.

Today's Disidente Pina (Pineapple) Colombian craft chocolate (bar) was manufactured by El Colaboratorio (Bogota, Colombia). 

Disidente creates bean-to-bar chocolates that celebrate the agricultural biodiversity of Colombia. They use Colombian-grown cacao(s)--sourced from cacao co-operatives and organizations/fermenteries in different regions of Colombia. Many bars also contain fruit and/or nut flavor inclusions.

Aroma notes for this Pina (Pineapple) bar (in order of appearance) included: chocolate (implied Criollo*), fruit, pineapple, vanilla,* cake. 

Flavor notes were more chocolate-forward initially, followed by a blooming of concentrated (dried), authentic pineapple flavor that became dominant in the blend and extended into the finish. The base chocolate (from what I could tell) had mild notes of stone fruit, milk/cream,* very faint light bitter earth (although the pineapple may have influenced, or even created the latter), and very fleeting, very faint molasses/brown sugar.

The cacao percentage was no listed on the label. I thought it might be 60-65% cacao chocolate. (The current version of this Pina bar on company's website lists it as a 70% bar when I checked today.) It was hard to determine, as the pineapple added natural sweetness. (Also, if the makers used a more delicate heritage Criollo or similar cacao, and a lighter roast, the resulting chocolate might have tasted milder or lighter.) 

Ingredients: Cocoa beans, organic cane sugar, cocoa butter (and pineapple pieces). 

Allergen-related information: (No information listed on label.)

*There were no vanilla or milk ingredients listed in this bar. The pineapple and sugar may have evoked memories of pineapple upside down (vanilla) cake. As for the "milk/cream" notes, Criollo (variety of cacao) will sometimes have notes of milk or cream.


Mid-Day Squares - Functional Chocolate Bar - Almond Crunch - Aug. 30, 2021

Chocolate of the Day

Mid-Day Squares
Functional Chocolate Bar - Almond Crunch
Good +
Weight: 2.33 oz. (66 g.) in total pkg. of 2 squares 
Calories: 340 calories in 2 squares (1 package)
Cost: $3.69 for 1 package of 2 squares
Purchased from: Sprouts Farmers Market, Mountain View, CA

Welcome to Day #8 of Cold Chocolate Theme Week, featuring frozen and refrigerated chocolate items.

Today's Almond Crunch Functional Chocolate Bar (2 bar-like squares in one package) hailed from Mid-Day Squares (Montreal, Canada). 

The company offers refrigerated bars/squares (including today's Almond Crunch--and two Squares product line sibling flavors: "Fudge Yah" and "Peanut Butta").

This square duo had a pleasing aroma with fudge nut brownie and chocolate almond granola notes; and had more (visible) layered soft and crunchy textures and flavors than a conventional chocolate bar, making it more complex and interesting. (It was topped with a layer of raw, dark chocolate.)

Flavor notes included: chocolate brownie with crunchy, nutty almond bits, and natural, sweet green and maple/caramelized brown sugar and nuts and crispy (implied flour-free chocolate, almond lace) cookie notes.

Seeking to transcend traditional snacks and traditional powdery/dry protein bars, these functional chocolates were defined as: "a chocolate bar with the functions of a protein bar."

Each package/pair of 2 refrigerated organic, gluten-free squares contained 12 g. of "clean" plant protein (almonds, brown rice, sacha inchi,* hemp, etc.--with no soy or dairy), and fiber, yet tasted like a "real" dark chocolate bar with crushed almonds that just happened to be more filling.

Ingredients: Organic roasted almonds, semi-sweet chocolate, (chocolate, cocoa butter, cocoa powder (processed with alkali), coconut sugar, 

Allergen-related information: "Contains almonds, coconut...May contain hazelnuts, peanuts."

*Sacha Inca protein comes from edible seeds from a shrubby plant (Plukenetia volubilis) that grows in Peru and other Amazon-proximate South American countries. These nut-like seeds are also known as sacha, mountain or Inca peanuts. 

The seeds develop inside unique, flower- or star-shaped pods; and each of the four or five "petals" contain a nut-like seed. 

Perfect Bar - Dark Chocolate with Sea Salt Refrigerated Peanut Butter Cups - Aug. 29, 2021

Chocolate of the Day

Perfect Bar LLC
Dark Chocolate with Sea Salt Refrigerated Peanut Butter Cups
Good +
Weight: 1.4 oz. (40 g.) in total package of 2 cups
Calories: 210 calories in 2 cups
Cost: $2.00 (sale) for 1 package of 2 cups
Purchased from: Sprouts Farmers Market, Mountain View, CA

Welcome to Day #7 of Cold Chocolate Theme Week.

Today's Perfect Snacks Dark Chocolate with Sea Salt Refrigerated Peanut Butter Cups were from Perfect Bar LLC, a family-founded company based in San Diego, CA.

These dark chocolate round mounds (cups) had an aroma with naturally sweet plant (green, maple) and nutty notes. The filled cups had a smooth outer dark chocolate coating with visible tiny, sparkling salt crystals, and a substantial, chunky filling (coarsely ground peanut butter + "superfood" powders).

If you're in the mood for a more savory than sweet treat, this "Perfect Snack" with satisfying sea salt and nut flavor might be perfect for you. The 7 grams of protein in 1 package of 2 cups (primarily from peanuts, milk, egg and rice protein) made this snack feel filling (closer to a meal replacement/protein bar than a dessert).

Ingredients: Organic peanut butter, organic and fair trade dark chocolate (organic cacao beans, organic cane sugar, organic cocoa butter, sunflower lecithin), organic honey, organic nonfat dry milk, organic rice protein, organic dried whole egg powder, sea salt, 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), organic sunflower lecithin, organic flax seed oil, organic sunflower oil, organic sesame seed oil, organic olive oil, organic pumpkin seed oil.

Allergen-related information: "Contains peanuts, milk, and eggs." (Also contains sesame.) "Processed on equipment also handling tree nuts. May contain occasional nut shells."

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