What we have here is a couple of single origin bars from L’Amourette from San Francisco. Both of these bars are made with Venezuelan beans and both are 75% cocoa solids, but one is a Caranero variety bean and the other is a Rio Caribe. These are both unflavoured bars, but L’Amourette also do a variety of flavoured bars as well.
As you can see, the bars have a distinctive moulding, with a pleasing curved effect to the chunks and a nice glossy finish.
I tried the Rio Caribe first. It has a nice, deep aroma, and the first thing you notice when you bite into a chunk is that it has a surprising sweetness. The flavour builds as the chocolate melts, with some rich earthy notes, but not a great deal of complexity, although I did pick up some fruity notes toward the end.
The chocolate has a very smooth texture and it melts evenly and slowly. The chunks are a little big and difficult to break if all you want is a small piece, but once you do manage to break a chunk in half, it’s quite nice to let it melt slowly on the tongue.
The Caranero has a much lighter flavour, with less of the earthy, more bitter notes of the other bar. It has a more complex and delicate flavour, with a bit of woodiness and some flowery notes. This one is very easy to eat.
Both these bars demand to be consumed slowly. At 75%, they’re not bars you can eat quickly anyway. In terms of quality, they’re not the finest of the fine, but they are very interesting – particularly if you can get both varieties and do a little comparison yourself.
They’re not available to buy online at the moment, but according to their website they are available at a number of locations around San Francisco, and if you’re further afield, drop them an email and I’m sure they’ll be happy to help.