Monday, January 9, 2023

Liofilizovana Visnja - Sour Cherry in Dark Chocolate - Jan. 8, 2023

Chocolate of the Day

Liofilizovana Visnja
Sour Cherry in Dark Chocolate
Good + - Good ++
Weight: 1.06 oz. (30 g.) / 2.12 oz. (60 g.) in total package
Calories: 161.4 calories in 1/2 package
Cost: N/A - gift from a friend (Thank you Toni!) 
Purchased from: N/A - gift from a friend who purchased in Europe

Welcome to Day #2 of Chocolate and Cherries Series.

Today's Lio Sour Cherry (dragees) in Dark Chocolate were produced by ART IVAL d.o.o. (Republic of Serbia).

The company describes these chocolate coated, freeze-dried sour cherries as being "packed with sweet and sour power." 

First, the aroma...These confections (before putting it into my mouth) had a relatively subtle chocolate (dark chocolate cookie, hot cocoa with faint vanilla) aroma.

Things got much more interesting upon taking the first bite. There were bursts of contrasting textures (smooth + an unexpected crunchiness) and flavors (smooth, sweet chocolate and tart-sweet and sour cherry). 

I experienced more of a hard crunch in some pieces than others when I bit into them. When I held a piece in my mouth (for 20+ seconds), the crunchy freeze-dried fruit mellowed into a more tender texture.

These sour cherry chocolates were authentic-tasting, nicely balanced and enjoyable to eat. (And yes, I did enjoy the "sweet and sour power.")

Ingredients: "dark chocolate min. 87% (cocoa mass, sugar, cocoa butter, emulsifier soya lecithin, natural vanilla flavouring. Cocoa solids: 56% min.), freeze-dried sour cherry min. 10%." 

Allergen-related complexity: "The product may contain traces of milk and nuts. No(t) recommended for children under the age of 3, due to the size of dragees."

* What are dragees? Generally, they are sweet, bite-sized confections (with nuts or fruits at the center) covered by a (sometimes crunchy candy, sometimes softer chocolate) shell.

The French word dragee may have come from Latin or Greek. The Greek word tragema referred to a dried fruit or sweetmeat (confection, sweet food).

Dick Taylor - Chocolate Coated Cherries (65% Belize dark chocolate) - Jan. 7, 2023

Chocolate of the Day

Dick Taylor Craft Chocolate 
Chocolate Coated Cherries - 65% Belize dark chocolate
Good ++
Weight: 2 oz. (57 g.) / 7 oz. (198 g.) in total container
Calories: 260 calories in 1 (2 oz./57 g.) serving 
Cost: $16.00 for 1 container
Purchased from: Bar and Cocoa, online order

Welcome to Day #7 of Chocolate and Belize Theme Week, and Day #1 of Chocolate and Cherry Week.

Today's Chocolate Coated Cherries from Dick Taylor Craft Chocolate (Eureka, CA) were a delicious intersection of these two themes.

It's a cold, rainy winter outside; but it's bright and fruity inside. Last week's New Year's lineup featured the almost magical fruit flavors/notes in six different single origin Belize dark chocolate bars. This week: a Chocolate and Cherry Series, will be followed by a Chocolate, Berries and Vanilla week. Winter seems less drab and gray with bright fruits, warm spices and chocolate.

Dick Taylor - Chocolate Coated Cherries

Aroma notes for these high-end chocolate coated cherries included rich dark cocoa, warm spices (cinnamon, cardamom) and very faint fruit and sweet cream/yogurt. 

Every mouthful was full of flavor. When I bit into a piece, there was a gentle crackling through the successive layers of thinly-deposited 65% Belize dark chocolate, into a chewy dried cherry fruit center. This chocolate had mild tart-sweet fruit notes. 

The tasting experience was both a reveal and a delightful ambush: that started with smooth and flavorful, layered dark chocolate followed by strong bursts of tart-sweet, organic cherry. 

Notes: Possibly addictive. I recommend not biting into these pieces right away. You'll get more of the chocolate experience that way. The authentic, concentrated cherry flavor tends to dominate once you bite into the center.

Maker's notes/description: "Organic dried tart cherries deliciously coated in layer upon layer of our award-winning 65% Belize dark chocolate. " 

Ingredients: Organic cherries, organic cacao, organic cane sugar, organic cocoa powder, organic cocoa powder, organic sunflower oil (cherries).

Allergen-related information: (None visible on label. Check with Dick-Taylor if you have questions about these confections.) Note: the allergen-related language printed on the packaging of the last Dick-Taylor bar I sampled read: "Made in a facility that also processes milk, tree nuts, wheat and peanuts." 

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