I’ll be honest with you right from the start – I’ve never liked the Guylian Seashells chocolates that seem to very popular gift ideas at Christmas time, Mothers Days and as ‘thank you’ presents. The icky blandness of the milk and white chocolate and hazelnut paste has never floated my chocolate boat.
Having said that, a new range of Guylian dark chocolate squares caught my eye the other day.
This tiny little 45g box offered three different varieties of dark chocolate with varying levels of cocoa solids. This is a clever idea and reflects the current trend that sees chocolate appreciation and tasting becoming as fun, prevalent (and poncy sometimes, let’s face it) as wine and coffee tasting.
Solitaire held three squares of each flavour (perfect for the Lockett family of three, all keen to try them) in the following styles:
- Asian Dark 56%
- Aztec Gold 65%
- African Ebony 70%
The difference in colour is quite noticeable from 56% to 70%. Interestingly, despite using cocoa from Asia (pretty broad description there, covering an area of the planet that houses at least three billion people), Africa (a rather large continent) and Aztec Gold (presumably South America), the chocolates themselves are made in Belgium. Oh.
Despite Belgium perhaps not having the reputation for being the most fun and vibrant place on earth, they’ve made a cracker of a name for themselves in the chocolate world, and these three unassuming little squares are no exception.
We started with the Asian Dark 56% and were impressed with the sweet, silky texture. The bitterness of the cocoa emerges with a faint hint of white pepper flavour, producing a very satisfyingly smooth and lingering taste. This would make a lovely block of dark all on its own – I certainly craved more than the 5g serving I had.
The Aztec Gold, entering the fray at 65% cocoa solids was less sweet with a noticeably stronger and bitter flavour than the Asian Dark but not so that it was overpowering. Still pleasantly smooth with a creamy mouth feel to it.
African Ebony 70% was of course the most bitter in flavour, and celebrated it. Unlike some dark chocolate at this level (Whittaker’s immediately springs to mind), it wasn’t gritty but remained sleek to the tongue and taste buds. Just perfect for late nights on the couch.
Guylian have come up with a real winner in my book. They have also released much larger boxes of these trios, which I’ll certainly be buying again. It is a clever and attractive way to encourage resisters to The Dark Side to move towards the heaven that is 56% percent and beyond.