Sunday, 15 November 2015

Tea is a Herb!

So I've been eating more chocolate for goal #64 (any excuse, really): to try 50 chocolates that are new to me.
This time around, I'm deeming tea a herb, and proclaiming this post all about herby chocolate.
Well...tea is herbs...right...?
The chocolates I've tried this time include green tea, basil and real rosemary...

Ombar Lemon and Green Tea
"Organic raw chocolate enriched with lemon & matcha green tea"
Considering the last bar of this flavour turned out not to my tastes, I figured I'd try a different brand!
This one is made from raw chocolate, and is a bar rather than a 'pie' like the last one. It comes as a neat and tidy little 35g bar and uses 100% natural ingredients, certified organic. So it's good stuff!
Looking at the information on the back, it also contains coconut sugar (as opposed to the usual sugar) and minimum 60% cocoa solids.

You can smell the cocoa the moment the wrapping is peeled back! This bar smells really good, and the chocolate is a good firm chocolate that snaps nicely when a piece of broken off.
The lemon flavour is fairly strong but brief, with the matcha green tea being the longer-lasting flavour. This chocolate isn't particularly sweet, though the lemon does lend itself to the sweetness, somewhat! I would rather it was a little sweeter.
I found this bar had a bit of a 'dry' aftertaste, which I think may be due to the matcha.
This is the only chocolate bar where I've wanted to drink a gallon of water afterwards!

Vanini Dark Chocolate with Rosemary
This bar caught my eye for two reasons: first, chocolate with rosemary?! Secondly, it's Italian chocolate, which I haven't happened upon so far!
Inside the cardboard outer packaging, the bar was wrapped in foil for extra freshness (or extra joy at opening, depending on how you look at it).
Strangely, the scent of the bar is really similar to mint chocolate, only not as strong.

The rosemary flavour is really prominent, though the experience of eating this chocolate is hard to explain. The scent and taste of the sugared rosemary, along with the flavour of the chocolate, stir up a feeling of a warm kitchen on a cold day, and home-cooked food fresh from the oven.
On the inside of the packaging, information can be found about where the cocoa is sourced for this bar. As it happens, it's Bagua cocoa, which has been grown as far back as 3000BC! Vanini buy their cocoa direct from a cooperative of Peruvian families in order to encourage a fair market, sustainable development and to improve conditions for local farmers. So whilst munching on my 62% dark chocolate I can be happy in the knowledge that the people who farmed the cocoa got a fear deal out of it.
Overall this is a really nice bar of chocolate. Tastes like love in sugary cocoa form!

Rococo Chocolates Basil & Persian Lime
65% cocoa dark chocolate flavoured with basil and lime.
This is the most expensive chocolate bar I've tried so far! I wasn't going to buy it, but remembered how much I enjoyed the mini Rococo 'bee' bar I'd tried before and figured I'd give this one a try!
This bar comes double-wrapped in a plastic wrapping and a decorative card box.
The chocolate itself is really dark, and according to the packaging, is made from cocoa beans grown on the company's own farm in Grenada.

The flavours come through more when chewing the chocolate than when letting it melt in the mouth, but aren't hugely obvious, which was a bit of a disappointment. I'd hoped that the bar would be a lot more flavoursome than this.
Another note on flavour is that this chocolate isn't sweet, which is great because it's easier to taste the cocoa (rather than the masses of sugar!)
I like the flavour of this bar, but probably wouldn't buy it again as the flavour isn't strong enough for me, and it's expensive in comparison to other bars of equally nice chocolate!

That's it for today! I have a whole bunch more to try out yet, with flavours such as rose, sesame and fig! (Note: not all in the same bar!)
You can see more of the chocolates I've tried on the chocolate tag!

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