One of the things I like best about this job is discovering products, manufacturers and ideas that are completely new to me. These chocolate bars from UK-based Australian-Italian chocolate maker Rocco DeAngelis are definitely new to me.
For a start, the standard dark chocolate bar has just two ingredients; Fair Trade Single Origin Cocoa and Organic Cane Sugar. Sound good, right? Well just wait until you see the bar…
You probably need to click through to see the full sized photo to get a better idea of what this bar looks like, but the appearance is almost that of snakeskin, because rather than undergoing lengthy industrial processes, the cocoa and sugar are simply forced together in a cold press.
But what’s more amazing than the look is the texture. What you end up with is a dry, crumbly, crispy, almost biscuit-like texture that’s quite unlike anything I’ve ever tasted.
The flavour is the really surprising thing though. For a product that contains only cocoa and sugar, it’s neither too sweet nor too bitter. The sugar simply takes the bitter edge of the cocoa and allows you to experience the rich, deep cocoa flavours in a way that shouldn’t scare anyone off.
Here we see the pistachio flavour bar, that’s made exactly the same way, but has Bronte Pistachios added to the mix before pressing. Once again, incredibly simple but effective.
At £20 per bar, these are not cheap at all. In fact, even for a quality product like this I’m concerned that they may be pricing themselves out of the market – or at least preventing the average person from trying it in the first place.
But I do think all chocolate lovers should seek it out and try some. It manages to combine the most basic and natural chocolate ingredients in a way that shouldn’t scare away even those with the sweetest of tooths. Just don’t approach expecting a smooth, glossy bar of mass produced chocolate, and I think you’ll love it.