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05 June 2016 @ 12:04 pm
Darker than Black, Week 14: Vosges Super Dark Reishi Mushroom & Walnut  
This week, we weren't really sure what we wanted to do for the chocolate. We have quite the haul--enough to last at least three months of entries, maybe longer--and after staring at them a few moments, softlykarou suggested that we resort to a traditional method of deciding. We put all the chocolate into a bag, I shook them up for a while, and then she reached in and picked one out. It's a better method than the pure intuition we've been using so far, though maybe we should write down the chocolate's names on pieces of paper and do it that way instead. They're slightly different sizes and shapes, and a couple samples aren't in the form of bars, so putting it all on index cards would be more fair.

On the back of the box, the reishi mushroom & walnut chocolate has a box that reads:
The medicinal value of reishi, heralded as the "Mushroom of Immortality," and "The Resurrection Plant," first appeared in written documents as far back as Han Dynasty (206 BC - 8 AD).
Which made me a bit leery. I mean, any food that's reputed to bring immortality is either A) vile B) extremely hard to get or C) both. After all, if the Fruit of the Tree of Life grew on...trees... photo 3327b7f6b45a33781e80dce4e4461510-d4ipx9c.gif then everyone would eat it and everyone would be immortal. Since that clearly isn't the case, there's a reason those kinds of foods aren't eaten very often, right?

Let's find out.

That does look tasty, but...

I was not a huge fan of this. It had a bit of crunch, and the walnuts and the salt provided the best part of the non-chocolate taste, but those mushrooms... Like I said above, there's a reason that common and tasty foods are never chosen as the foods that grant eternal life. The reishi mushrooms just tasted off. I'm sure that if I had them in a stew or a curry, or even salted and grilled and put on a plate like the way the 小山s made enoki mushrooms that time we were out on a walk and they called us over to share their food, I would have loved them. But here, in chocolate and mixed with walnuts, they did not go well together.

I'm having a hard time describing the taste. It was a bit sour, but a bit just...off. Not the sort of taste that should go with chocolate. It was like the proverbial pickles and ice cream, where there's nothing wrong with either of them individually and they're actually quite good, but combining them together leads to something offputting. I mean, not that offputting because I ate my whole half of the bar and I would still eat more if any were left, so maybe I protest too much. But if a selection of Vosges chocolate bars were set before me, I would definitely pick the matcha bar over this one.

Huh. You know, green tea and reishi mushrooms might have gone well together, actually. Maybe that's too foreign for Vosges's audience, but I would eat it.


softlykarou's Opinion
For a "super dark" bar, this wasn't that super dark. I didn't get the delicious bitterness that I typically enjoy from things around 85-90% (though 90 is usually pushing it a little). I enjoyed the salt, since salt and sweet are two of my favorite flavors to go together. The warm nutty flavor from the walnuts was also a nice touch. That being said, I wish there was more mushroom flavor though I know that may have been hard to capture. The salt is such a strong taste that even the walnut taste is more subtle. It's ok, but for the price, I kind of want more.
If it had been just a walnut and salt chocolate bar, I definitely would have liked it better, but of course they couldn't have sold that as a  photo emot-science.gifsuperfood.  photo emot-science.gif This chocolate stands as yet another reason to be wary of anything calling itself a superfood. There's food, and even food we've mutated doesn't really have superpowers. Especially not super taste.
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