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26 June 2016 @ 05:22 pm
Darker than Black, Week 17: Theo Chocolate Cherry Almond 70% Dark  
I just posted on Facebook that love is playing JRPGs back-to-back with your wife on a lazy Sunday. She's playing Kingdom Hearts on her computer and I'm playing the recently-bought Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky on mine, so while we're not playing together, we are, in a way. It's like submerging myself in a warm bath of JRPG tropes, remembering the days when non-MMO Final Fantasy was good and I played through FFIX at university in the girls' dorm room (greyselke, t3chnomag3, and spacialk), FFVIII on my sister's PS2, or the original Final Fantasy in the basement on a cart borrowed from the kid down the street, grinding outside the Marsh Cave for hours until I felt confident enough to enter. Back then I loved sugary desserts and JRPGs, and now I love dark chocolate and Dark Souls.

...Dark Chocolate Souls. Perfect marketing opportunity. Talk to me, From.

Anyway, I wanted 90% cacao dark chocolate after lunch and I'm going to have ice cream after dinner, but I still wanted to do Darker than Black today, especially since in a couple weeks we're going to miss some time due to softlykarou and I being in Japan. Good reason to take time off, yes, but it does inspire me to keep a continual stream until then, so I figured why not have those and some chocolate this afternoon? This series is about how much I love chocolate, right? Let's have some outside of schedule.

Also, the following photo continues a trend I've been perpetuating lately.


No Kirby, you don't get any chocolate!

I'm often wary when trying flavored chocolate, because the thing about very dark chocolate is that you need a lot of cacao in the mix to make it dark chocolate, and that doesn't leave much space for any other flavors. Often it promises more than it can deliver, like with Ghirardelli's Intense Dark Cabernet Matinee that was none of those things at all.

Surprisingly, that's not the case here. When I first bit down I got a slightly bitter almond taste and I figured that the cherry would be too faint to notice, but I was wrong! As I chewed, the almond faded away and the cherry took over, and as I was eating I could see that in addition to the obvious slivers of almond embedded in the chocolate, there were bits of cherry too, less obvious because they were darker. The ingredients tell me that they're real cherries as well, though mixed in with rice flour for some reason. Fortunately, I couldn't taste that. The flavors kept alternating as I kept eating in a way that was pleasant and not mouth-confusing. My tastebuds were always happy with what was going on. Also, it didn't taste like cough syrup, which is always a concern with fruit in chocolate.

The actual chocolate was a bit sweeter than I usually like it, but they probably couldn't make it darker with all the other stuff packed in. And the almonds did something to bring the sweetness down, so it's not like I was dissatisfied.


Almonds struggling to break free.

softlykarou's Opinion
Tart cherry flavor is a joy to me, especially in chocolate. I believe I've had this Theo bar before, but I was determined to try it in a more mindful way. It's 70%, which is less dark than dorchadas and I like it but the sour-sweetness of the cherries gives it that dark aftertaste (I like bitter things: dark chocolate, coffee, dorchadas). The toasted almonds were a good crunch and there weren't so many of them I felt like I was eating almond bark instead of a chocolate bar. The flavors married well and seem to let each other be rather than fighting for dominance. And on that super pretentious-foodie note, I conclude my review.
That's something else I hadn't mentioned--the ingredient list specifically says "sour cherries," so even though it's a bit sweet it's not so much so that it changes the feel of the chocolate. It might even be less sweet than the chocolate around it. What I thought after trying this is that I should buy dried cherries to put on my yogurt. I don't like too much in it, just a bit of coconut and a sprinkle of fruit, and the cherries here would fit perfect.

Or I could just shave this chocolate into it. That actually might work really well.
 
 
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