This bar was approached with a fair amount of trepidation after the severe disappointment of Dagoba’s 68% cocoa-content dark chocolate with hemp seeds. Was this one destined to go the same way? After all, it was starting a few steps behind being a mere milk chocolate with less than half the cocoa content of the seeds bar.
Then again, who doesn’t love chai tea? It’s hard not to giggle at their philosophy typed on the back: Chocolate is sacred. There is an art to the alchemy of chocolate, an art we explore with mystery and integrity.
In keeping with their philosophy of mystery, Dagoba are not revealing exactly what spices they’ve used in their list of ingredients. Apart from their organic milk chocolate, organic cane juice, organic cocoa butter etc, they’ve only mentioned crytallized ginger and ‘essential oils’. However, the smells drifting up from the bar when the gold foil was opened suggested cinnamon, cardamom, ginger and cloves.
As you can see, there’s a bit of white ‘bloom’ on the chocolate due to it having melted on the way home, being re-set in the fridge and then getting soft again whilst photographing this. Blame the hottest Aussie summer we’ve had in at least twenty years. If the flavour survives this weather, it’ll survive anything.
Anxiously, I snapped off a piece and let it dissolve in my mouth. It tasted very sweet, slightly creamy and had a really distinct Chai tea flavour. There were strong top notes (yep, that’s Simon’s influence at work there) of cinnamon and cardamon before fading back and revealing the secondary layer of mild ginger with tiny little gritty bits at the end. The chocolate itself is vaguely reminiscent of a Cadbury Dairy Milk – albeit it with their self-proclaimed ‘alchemy, mystery and integrity’ which in fact complements the Chai spices perfectly.
This bar disappeared in no time at all and paired up extremely well with a hot cup of black tea. This is a hundred times better in flavour, complexity and taste than Dagoba’s ‘Seeds’ dark chocolate bar, so I’m now keen again to venture out and discover more of their other varieties.