This is one of those chocolate bars where I have so much to say, it’s difficult to know where to start.
Let’s turn this review upside down. You need to buy this chocolate bar. In fact, you should probably just head on over to Rococo Chocolates now, buy a bar, then come back here and I’ll tell you why.
Got one? Good. Let’s begin.
Regular Chocablog readers may know that ‘Grococo’ is a joint venture between The Grenada Chocolate Company and Rococo. It is actually a nine acre cocoa farm on the island of Grenada. Usually, the beans produced by the estate are used in The Grenada Chocolate Company’s bars, but this year they decided to take the small harvest and use the beans to produce a single estate chocolate bar.
But this isn’t just any chocolate bar. I’m sure you’re already aware that The Grenada Chocolate Company is just about the most the most ethical and sustainable chocolate making co-operative on the planet, but this bar takes those ideals to extremes.
It’s not just about ethics though. Owners Mott Green and Chantal Coady have gone to equally extreme lengths to get the best possible flavour out of each and every bean that has gone into this chocolate.
I want to share a few facts about Gru Grococo to illustrate just how much effort went into producing it:
- The Trinatario beans come entirely from the Grococo farm. This is “single estate” rather than just “single origin”.
- The beans are fermented and dried in The Grenada Chocolate Company’s precisely controlled fermentary and high tech drying racks.
- Every bean is sorted by hand so that not a single bad bean gets through. This means that there’s no need to add any vanilla to the chocolate, something that’s done in almost all chocolates to cover up bad flavours.
- The chocolate factory itself is solar powered.
- The wrapper is made from carbon neutral paper, made with wind power.
- The finished bars were shipped from Grenada to the UK in a square-rigged sailing cargo ship with no engines, using solar and wind power to cool the chocolate on its 8 week journey. Yes, really.
At £11.95, this may be the most expensive chocolate bar you ever buy. But it may also be the best. Years of reviewing chocolate has taught me that it’s a very subjective thing, and what some people love others may hate. But I really think you can feel and taste the quality and attention to detail that has gone into producing this bar.
Rococo’s Chantal Coady told me that we should all be paying more for a chocolate. The price that most people expect to pay for a bar of chocolate does not reflect the work that goes into producing it. As a result, cocoa farmers struggle to make a living, and as consumers we’ve become used to very poor quality chocolate.
Paying a few pounds extra for a bar of chocolate like this, is like paying a little extra for a quality wine. It’s not something you need to do every day, but when you do, the difference is obvious.
And that difference really is obvious in this chocolate. Of course, it’s beautifully moulded using the same moulds The Grenada Chocolate Company use for all their bars. It’s a glossy, deep redish-brown colour and in itself it’s a work of art.
It’s almost a shame to break into it, but wonderful aroma means you won’t be able to resist for long. Of course, it breaks with a beautiful clean snap, and looks just as good on the inside as it does on the outside.
And it tastes wonderful. It’s not just the chocolate making process and pricing that’s comparable to wine, it’s the flavour too. And this chocolate has a wonderfully fruity flavour, very much like the Madagascan chocolate I love so much, but a little less jarring and intense than Madagascan beans can be. After the fruity hit, the flavour develops into something more rounded, sweet and chocolatey.
I really do love this chocolate. I love the passion and hard work that has gone into making it, and I love how it tastes. It isn’t cheap, but then it shouldn’t be cheap. Whatever kind of chocolate you think you like, you should try this.