Flavor Picks: Bright and Expressive
Karen, our Flavor Manager, has handpicked this set of bars to guide you through the complexity of flavors that can be found in our chocolates:
I pulled this set together to showcase the way acidity plays into our final perception of a chocolate bar. Please do not misread this as being all about the fruit! While, yes, there are fruit call-outs in all of these bars, the real trick is to understand how the levels of acidity balance each bar with the other aromas that are present. It may seem like a daunting task, but I believe in you! Stay curious and spend some time with each of these bars, paying close attention to how their acidity plays into your final perception of each origin.
This is the set for you if you are ready to go deeper, to explore an area of flavor that is not commonly acknowledged (outside of the world of craft chocolate, that is) as a place where chocolate can flourish!
-Karen, Flavor Manager
This set includes:Kokoa Kamili, Tanzania 70%, 2017 Harvest
When we hear the word “acidity” we often think of things like lemons or vinegar. However, the team at Kokoa Kamili are experts at turning out beans that uniquely balance acidity with innate sweetness in their beans. This is why you’ll find notes like honey and peach in this bar, two things that are touched by both sweetness and a hint of sour. This is one of the most lightly roasted bars that we’ve ever produced, as to preserve the light and delicate fruit aromas.
Zorzal Estate, Dominican Republic 70%, 2016 Harvest
tasting notes: key lime, clotted cream, fudge
Like ensuring that your favorite dish is balanced with a squeeze of fresh citrus, the lime present in this bar brings life and nuance to the dairy and chocolatey notes at the finish. We’ve been working with the team from Zorzal from almost the beginning (theirs and ours) and I like to think of this bar as a reflection of the dedication that Charles and his team have put into continually pursuing complex yet approachable cocoa that can be used for anything from a decadent stand-alone bar to baking chocolate.
Ambanja, Madagascar 70%, 2017 Harvest
tasting notes: passionfruit, crème fraîche, shortbread
These beans are so fundamentally paradoxical to our western understanding of what chocolate should taste like! Ambanja is and always has been a divisive bar in our spread. Often people either love it or hate it. And to be honest, we’re okay with that! Love it or hate it, there are few experiences out there to simply and honestly turn your understanding of what something should be upside down! With its punchy acidity and creamy dairy notes, be prepared to ask yourself, “Is this even chocolate?”
Ben Tre, Vietnam 70%, 2018 Harvest
tasting notes: candied ginger, molasses, apple cider
When we tasted the sample of Ben Tre beans that Marou sent to us, we were greeted by a chocolatey spice bomb. When we began processing at scale we also found a fair bit of acidity underlining much of what we tasted. We worked to find a compelling way for the acidity and spice to work in tandem. This bar triggers happy memories of cold seasons and warm beverages and has quickly become one of my go-to bars when I need a dose of refined nostalgia.
Anamalai, India 70%, 2018 Harvest
tasting notes: mimosa, pot de crème
When we are discussing acidity in chocolate we often lean on the acetic acids that highlight fruits, but another important byproduct of fermentation is lactic acid. Lactic acid can give you the perception of milk where there is none, or a creamy mouthfeel associated with the whipped cream on top of your hot chocolate.
Anamalai marries these two acids in a way that just feels right. This bar can stand on its own two feet next to origins like Ambanja, Madagascar with its bright citrus-centric acidity. However, this bar is reminiscent of a decadent brunch experience to me, and stands out with its unique effervescence and light booziness paired with a rich dairy-forward finish.
10 ounces (280 g)
Learn more about our cocoa beans and sugar – the region, the farms, and the producers.
ALL OF OUR SINGLE-ORIGIN CHOCOLATE IS MADE WITH JUST COCOA BEANS AND SUGAR; NO ADDED COCOA BUTTER, LECITHIN, OR VANILLA. OUR CHOCOLATE IS FREE OF SOY, DAIRY, EGGS, AND GLUTEN, AND IT IS MADE IN A FACTORY THAT DOES NOT PROCESS NUTS.