When I start thinking about everything I need to get done before I head off on my Great Big Gallivant in less than a month, I get a panicked feeling in my chest. My stomach gets all knotty-like, and my throat feels tight. You see, I’m not very good at errands, particularly the kind that involve paperwork, bureaucracy, and comparing insurance options. In fact, I’m pretty much Bernard Black.
The only errand I’m able to approach with glee is that of making my way through all the chocolate I have piled up around around me. In other words, get ready for many Chocolatepaloozas in coming weeks. I hope you don’t mind.
Gewűrzhaus Dark Chocolate 70% Ancho Chilli
My spectacular brother sent me this handcrafted Australian chocolate after spotting it at Melbourne’s Gewűrzhaus Herb and Spice Merchants. I love that the wrapping includes the gentle request to “[p]lease remember to dispose of the packaging thoughtfully”. I dutifully acquiesced when the time came, watching the paper float-twirl down to rest against a bundle of free supermarket recipe booklets in the recycling bin.
Made with 70% dark chocolate and ancho chilli, this chocolate had a snap hard enough to test my finger strength, and a dark black shiny glossy surface that reminded me of the midnight-coloured pony my parents never bought me.
The aroma had the slight fruity heat of chilli, and a hint of campfires and spice. The flavour was subtle at first, then built into smoky woodsy spicy hot fudge toasted marshmallows notes. A lovely chocolate indeed.
Chocolove Chilies and Cherries in Dark Chocolate
Today’s Chocolatapalooza is all about heat in chocolates, so it made sense to review the Chocolove Chilies and Cherries in 55% Dark Chocolate that Casey sent me way back yonder-yonder. This chocolate uses both ancho and chipotle chillies, and had a spicy aroma that made me think, for a moment, of cinnamon.
From the first nibble, this Chocolove chocolate hit me with sweetness and the prickling burning heat of chillies, which were like playful little needles in my throat*. The vanilla-strong sweetness of the chocolate countered the chillies’ heat well, while also making room for the tangy dried cherries.
* I swear I’m not a junkie.
Dolfin Dark Chocolate with Pink Peppercorns (Noir au Poivre Rose)
After my traumatic experience with Vosges’ pink peppercorn Amalfi Bar, I unwrapped Dolfin’s 52% Dark Chocolate with Pink Peppercorns cautiously. However, I was determined to keep an open mind, because my dear friend Lexi sent me this in a care package that created a million smiles in my heart. Thank you Lexi, for your ever-support.
As I tentatively nibbled the Dolfin Noir au Poivre Rose chocolate I found that, unlike the Vosges Bar, the pink peppercorns permeated the dark chocolate like a fragrant complement to its sweetness, rather than appearing as discrete and shocking crunches. The peppercorns have a distinct spice-fruit-heat flavour that balances the sweet vanilla and red-fruit notes of the dark chocolate. You know what? This chocolate works. It actually works.
Question Time: How are you with errands? Are you a gung-ho-complete-all-the-things type of person? Or, like me, do you find yourself wiping the kitchen bench in the morning and then thinking “Well done me! Time for a day-long break!”