Rausch (www.rausch-schokolade.com) is a German chocolatier that Rainer and Oliver from Premier Food and Beverages are bringing out to Australia. Rausch is a family-owned, third-generation company that has been making chocolate since 1918. In more recent years they’ve established their very own SchokoLand too, where lucky visitors can visit the museum, try delicacies at the café and see their chocolate being made.
Rausch’s Plantagen (plantation) range was developed in 2000 to highlight eight different but key cocoa producing regions, producing blocks of single-origin chocolate with varying cocoa contents for keen chocaholics to try. The cocoa contents range from 35% to 80%, but I’m trying the first four in the range today:
The first thing that struck me was how beautifully packaged they are, in colour graduations to indicate the increase in cocoa content from the mild 35% to 47%. Their envelope, front-opening also reminds me of the winning Wonka bars from the original 1971 movie – very enticing indeed and hinting at the richness hiding within.
Undressed, the chocolates still look gorgeous, with a distinct change in colour the higher up the cocoa scale. Starting from lightest to darkest, we have
- Noumea 35% from Papua New Guinea
- Madanga 39% from Madagascar
- Puerto Caballo 43% from Venezuela
- Guacimo 47% from Costa Rica
But how do they taste?
This has a waxy texture that wasn’t as quick to melt as you’d normally expect with a milder, creamier chocolate. It is also not overly sweet, which is a pleasant change and allows you to fully appreciate the clean milk flavour. It doesn’t sound quite right, but I’d honestly describe this block as sort of cool and refreshing.
More buttery flavours begin to emerge in this little beauty, with the underlying cocoa also making its presence felt. Again this is not sickly sweet, but a bit softer and meltier, allowing the cream to shine as the top note before the cocoa emerges. Better than Cadbury Dairy Milk, that’s for sure.
Puerto Cabello 43%
This is the favourite stolen-sample from the staff kitchen at Premier Food and Beverages and they clearly have good taste. This is even quicker to melt on the tongue yet has a much stronger cocoa flavour with a nicely nutty aftertaste that makes it much different to its partner plantations.
A stand-out. Whilst being very similar in taste to Haigh’s milk chocolate, it has a stronger secondary note of coffee or burnt wood. Despite that description giving the ponce-sounding factor more than a bit of a nudge, the darker hue really is noticeable on the palate and has made me realise that single origin chocolate is definitely worth investigating for their markedly different flavour notes and textures.
These are all uniquely delicious together or separately. I’m really looking forward to trying the next four in their range. I love this job.