Recently I reviewed another bar from Hawaii-based Madre Chocolate that turned out to be one of my favourite flavoured bars of all time. Their Triple Cacao bar, made with both nibs and cacao pulp is deliciously fruity and crunchy.
That bar is made with cacao from the Dominican Republic, but this Earl Grey Tea chocolate bar is the first time I’ve reviewed something with beans grown in Hawaii itself. Or if you want to be precise, the Alae Estate in Hamakua, a district in the north west of Hawaii’s Big Island.
Hawaii is, of course, the only part of the United States far enough south to grow cacao, so any bar made from bean to bar on the island with local beans is something to shout about. But it also contains Hawaiian grown tea and vanilla, so it’s no surprise that the packaging calls it a Limited Edition.
The first thing I noticed about the chocolate was that it’s both incredibly smooth and very sweet for a 70% cocoa solids bar. There’s a gentle fruitiness as the chocolate starts to melt, and then the tea kicks in. It’s more pronounced than many tea chocolates I’ve had in the past, and although it overwhelms the chocolate a little, it’s really rather nice. There’s a gently spicy bergamot finish that stays with you for several minutes. Long enough to remind you that you want another piece.
This is the kind of chocolate bar I will happily nibble on through the course of the day, rather than one that I covet and love like Madre’s Triple Cacao bar. But for uniqueness of flavour and origin, it’s certainly something worth trying.