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10 April 2016 @ 08:35 pm
Darker than Black, Week 7: French Broad 100% Cacao Chocolate  
When I first told people about this project, one of my friends asked me if I was ever going to do baking chocolate as the darkest of dark chocolate. I told him that I would eventually get to it, and this week I’d like to report that I’ve gone one better. A couple weeks ago, softlykarou went to Asheville to visit some friends, and while there she bought the chocolate listed there in the subject line. So tonight, I ate not just baking chocolate, but artisanal hipster baking chocolate!

This isn’t the first time I’ve had chocolate this dark. Lindt makes a 99% cacao chocolate bar that I’ve eaten a couple times, though honestly I thought the much better use for it was to put it in whole milk with some cayenne pepper to make Mexican hot chocolate. Perfect for those cold Chicago winter days, which we’ve had plenty of since I moved here. Though not today, fortunately. Maybe someday I’ll actually do that Mexican hot chocolate as a combo breaker.

And now, I bring you the  photo darksouls.001.gif of chocolates.


Tasteful. Understated. Powerful.

I actually was expecting this not to be that great. Part of the problem I had with the 99% cacao is that it was incredibly bitter and also a little bit chalky, in the odd way that milk chocolate tastes chalky to me. This wasn’t either of those, however. It wasn’t bitter at all, in fact--it was sour. I’m not a huge fan of sour flavors, but I like them a lot more than I like bitter ones. The texture was smooth and creamy too, so while I wouldn’t be scarfing this down like the Lindt 90% that I eat pounds and pounds of, I took the rest of softlykarou’s share when she couldn’t eat it and then took a little bit more. This was good.

When I opened it up, there was a note wrapped around the bar, which reads in part:
A Bar of Great Intent
This bar is not for everybody. But it is for folks like you and me. We relish the opportunity to taste the unadulterated purity of 100% cacao chocolate. With no sweet embellishment, the seed and the maker can both show their true colors.

This is a bar of great intent: a melange of six origin cacaos our chocolate makers separately roasted, ground, and aged...then blended, conched together, and aged again. And we tasted, every step of the way, until it hit all the right notes.
Enjoy your sub-100% cacao adulterated trash, you filthy peasants.  photo emot-colbert.gif


There’s an “afterword” under the chocolate.  photo emot-parrot.gif

softlykarou’s Opinion
I don't like my chocolate as dark as dorchadas does. 85% is right at the sweet spot for me. Most chocolates with a higher cacao percentage tend to taste chalky to me. This bar did not! It was very smooth to eat and left a good texture on my tongue. The aftertaste was also very minor and not unpleasant. That being said, I'm still not going to eat anymore of it. It was incredibly sour and bitter in a proportion that I didn't like. I imagine I'd acclimate but I bought this for dorchadas so I'm happy that he shared a bit with me!
I should try using this for Mexican hot chocolate too. If I like this better than I like the Lindt 99%, I imagine I’d like anything it’s made with as well. Maybe some kind of matcha flourless chocolate cake? Though I suppose that would be a waste when generic baking chocolate does just as well.

The note I quoted above also says:
We taste raisin, espresso crema, and almond butter.
I’m pretty sure this nonsense in much the way that wine tasting is--not one of those is a sour flavor. But I’ll be looking out for it when I eat the rest of the bar.
 
 
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