I’ve been doing Chocablog for nearly two and a half years now, and one of the things that still surprises me is that there are still many, fairly large chocolate companies that we haven’t even talked about. Valrhona is one such company, but now their products are readily available in Waitrose, I think it’s about time we gave them a go.
Valrhona are, as the name suggests, based in the Rhône valley near Lyon, and according to the always-accurate-and-never-wrong Wikipedia, they’ve been making chocolate since 1924.
I did try to find out more information via their official web site, but alas it seems they hired the writing team from ‘Allo ‘Allo to write the content. But at least now I know that “In the light of increasing uniformisation of flavours and culinary standards, VALRHONA has decided to take action to study, promote and valorise taste in our society.”
The (rather extensive) blurb on the back of the bar itself calls it “Chocolate with a long-tasting, distinctive flavour, mild yet rich in cocoa, with notes of caramel and vanilla, deliciously set off by a touch of malt”.
Ok, so I get the general idea, but surely it wouldn’t be that difficult to hire a decent translator. Time to let the chocolate speak for itself…
Luckily, the chocolate is more than capable of standing on its own. Put simply, it’s one of the nicest milk chocolates I’ve ever had.
There’s really only one way to eat this. Place half a square on your tongue and just let it melt away and release its flavours slowly. First you get a malty, slightly nutty flavour, then the chocolate flavour slowly builds. This is a 40% milk chocolate, so that flavour is quite distinct and doesn’t get lost in the sweetness and creaminess.
The only problem is, it’s all too easy to demolish this 75g bar in a matter of minutes – and it’s not cheap. This is the kind of bar that should be eaten slowly, savoured, and preferably shared.
Alas, I have no self control, so I’m just off out to buy some more. Oh well.