Before I even opened this chocolate by Cocoa Bean Chocolate Co., it had made me happy for several reasons:
- The chocolate was brought back from overseas, specifically for me, by my lovely friend Jess. Jess also once sent me a postcard, out-of-the-blue, from one of her overseas conference trips. Her message read (in part) “Hello from New York! Such a cliche thing to say but – wish you were here! We could take New York by storm…”. I keep this postcard at my office at work and, whenever I feel like all the Canberran-ness surrounding me is becoming too suffocatingly Canberran, I read the postcard and breathe deeply, remembering that there are a squillion cities and countries out there that I love, miss, cherish, can and will visit.
- The chocolate is Irish, and last Friday night I saw The Guard, which is set in Ireland. The movie was hee-larious, in an awesomely dark, non-PC, brilliant way. I will state upfront that I giggled more than anyone else in the cinema, but I own that with pride. Give me such a movie over the likes of The Hangover any day.
It’s probably time to talk about the chocolate now.
Cocoa Bean Chocolate Co. Lime Zest and Black Pepper Dark Chocolate
My first experience with Cocoa Bean Chocolate Co. was its Gin and Tonic Dark Chocolate, which was so utterly reminiscent of its namesake that eating it almost led to me dancing wildly on a tabletop (actually, judging by history, a true gin and tonic would be more likely to see me draped precariously half-on-half-off a green couch wearing one shoe, methodically eating an entire bowl of almonds one-by-one whilst my oldest friend makes giggling phone calls to her crushes at three in the morning. But I digress).
After the fabulousness of that chocolate, I had high hopes for this lime zest and black pepper creation, which is comprised of 70% cacao content chocolate and is proclaimed to have “intense” chocolate, a “zap” of lime, and a “cheeky tingle” of pepper.
An intense cheeky tingle zap? Count me in.
I’ll have to be honest and say that this chocolate conveyed to me less of an “intense cheeky tingle zap” and more of a “subtle pleasant tangy smoothness”. Which is not to say that this chocolate was disappointing, but that its flavour profile was far more subdued than the marketing spiel led me to expect.
The lime and pepper are both present, yes, but very quietly so. The pepper is like the soft ebbing hum of a low note played continuously by an orchestra’s viola , its spicy flavour ever-present yet lacking a loud single note of burning heat.
The lime, too, is subtle, yet does clearly contribute to the chocolate’s refreshing tangy flavours.
The 70% chocolate itself has notes of citrus, vanilla, brown sugar, charcoal, walnut, and dark cocoa. At times, the lime and pepper seem more like elements of the cacao bean’s flavour profile than additions to the bar itself but, either way, this Cocoa Bean Chocolate Co. Lime Zest and Black Pepper Dark Chocolate is a lovely taste experience.
Question Time: What would a Gin and Tonic lead you to do?