Every now and again you have to get a pleasant surprise, and yesterday was one of those days.
The Lady of the House likes to make snide remarks about “The Chocolate Obsession”. But she also finds new and different things when out shopping, and brings them home. Then has a go at me when I have a rush of enthusiasm and whip out the camera. For the chocolate. (What were you thinking?)
Yesterday, she brought home this “Cocoa Belgian Dark” – which immediately put her in the good books seeing as I’m a pal of Darth Vader (Dark Side… OK, I suppose it IS getting a bit lame). This is a 50% cocoa solids block – so not a dark as some, but dark enough!
My enthusiasm faded a bit when I read the back of the pack, and saw the dreaded words “Made in Belgium for Big W”.
We’ve had a number of reviews here of chocolates made for large stores in Australia, the UK, and the USA. In most cases they have been pretty ordinary, some have been terrible. So I prepared myself to be disappointed, and set the pack aside – for later.
Well…. Later arrived after an hour or so. It was time to give it a try. Weak willed.
First impression on opening the pack was a rich, dark, almost earthy aroma. A good start. Next, breaking off a piece. This chocolate is quite thick, the pieces are a good size, and it’s pretty solid – so the pieces break with a nice, very satisfying snap. And the taste? It’s good. Very good. The texture is excellent – fine, a good slow melt, lots of complex flavours. I promptly ate a couple of rows. And a couple more today.
This reminds me a bit of the Kinnertons – perhaps that’s just that they are both 50% chocolates – but no, there are other similarities in flavour and texture as well. There’s almost a vanillin flavour, or hint there. No vanilla listed on the ingredients, so it must come from the beans used. And mercifully it’s not too sweet.
Best of all: it comes in a decent, healthy sized 200 gram block. But there is even better (though in this regard the Lady of the House is a terrible disappointment, because she thought it excessive) – it also comes in a 400 gram block! Excellent! This one would actually make a really good chocolate to use in the mousse recipe, instead of the Lindt.
All in all, a very pleasant surprise for a megamart own-brand. (Makes note to go buy more.)