In keeping with my recently reinstated quest to translate all my waffling chocolate tasting notes into blog reviews so that I can justify buying and eating more chocolate (more chocolate! more chocolate! ‘Muricah!), here are four chocolate treats I was generously given way, way back in that place called Australia.
Rococo Basil and Persian Lime Organic Dark Chocolate
If I turned the packaging for this Rococo Basil and Persian Lime Organic Dark Chocolate into wallpaper, I’d likely have nightmares six nights out of seven. And the seventh would only be dream-free if I self-medicated with bottles of Captain Morgan Spiced Rum right before bedtime. That aside, this fancypants UK chocolate was sent to me by my friend Jessica, who also kindly gave me these Gin & Tonic and Lime Zest & Black Pepper chocolate blocks. Thank you Jess!
The aroma of Rococo’s dark basil and lime chocolate was deeply herbal, almost potpourri-like, and reminded me a little of ylang ylang essential oil. The chocolate snapped crisply, and the strongest initial flavour was definitely dried basil, with cocoa coming in softly afterwards.
The chocolate had vanilla and ice cream notes, neither smoky nor tangy. The lime wasn’t particularly strong, but did provide balance against the basil. A lovely chocolate, all told.
Perfection Chocolates Dark Peanut Clusters
My lovely former colleague Vicky gave me these Dark Peanut Clusters for my birthday back in May, and they proved supremely satisfying whilst pushing through my final deadlines and handover documents at work. Perfection Chocolates is a Sydney-based chocolatier specialising in handmade chocolates, and these stupendously fresh-crispy roasted peanut clusters bound together with sweet dark chocolate were a wonderful snack to have hidden in my office desk drawer.
Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate with Raisins and Pecans
Despite the fact that I’m now in the U.S., both of today’s Trader Joe’s chocolates came to me courtesy of my brother, who brought them back to Australia for me in January. It’s just as well he did, for I would never have chosen a bar filled with squidgy raisins myself. The squelch factor! The squelch factor!
I do adore pecans, though, so tried to approach the sweet 57% dark chocolate creation with an open mind. The aroma was subtle, with perhaps a hint of wine. The nuts were big and plentiful (go ahead, Amber, giggle), and the chocolate sent forth mellow caramel, caster sugar, and woodsy notes with a redcurrant aftertaste. The pecans were fresh, soft, and lovely, and the raisins weren’t utterly unbearable in their squelchy squelchiness. That’s a win, surely?
Trader Joe’s 70% Dark Chocolate Bar with Toffee, Walnuts and Pecans
Dark chocolate with toffee, walnuts, and pecans? Oh yes, this is far more my style. I liked this chocolate from the moment I breathed it in and found that it reminded me of my Raw Vegan Brownies with Icing of Pure Amazingness. Deep cocoa, the earthy smokiness of walnuts… I took a bite and the crispy cleaving salty toffee combined with the soft crunch of the walnuts and pecans was scrumptiousness indeed.
The toffee was buttery and salty which, set against the creamy, vanilla-permeated, and not-particularly-strong dark chocolate, made me think of the crispy edges of buttery chocolate chip cookies. Very tasty, and very easy to eat. Thanks brother-man!
Question time: Have you tried any of these chocolates? What did you think?