30 June 2006

Responsible Chocolate

Posted in food, reviews at 11:32 pm by Tricia

A few months ago, I got some coupons for Endangered Species chocolate. Today I was at the local grocery store which carries the biggest variety of their bars, so I bought a couple (the eco-rounds, and the black rhino bar). Cybele is busy reviewing her haul from the All Candy Expo, so I decided to write up these myself. (Besides, I’m hoping it will help me remember which varieties I do and do not like! On the do not like side: their ‘black panther’ extreme dark (88%).)

First up is eco-rounds: “Caramelized cocoa nibs in exquisite chocolate”. I bought this because it was on sale, and because lately I’ve been intrigued with the whole cocoa nibs trend, but I’ve been unable to find the Endangered Species bat bar with cocoa nibs.
The package is not very appealing – I prefer the gorgeous animal artwork on the others. And the name is just goofy. What exactly is an “eco-round”? How does it convey “chocolate”?? Granted, the animal names for their other bars are rarely related to the candy contained within, but once you have a theme you should stick to it in my opinion!

eco-rounds chocolateThe pieces are pretty, though – slightly glossy and round, with lines radiating out from a center circle and a fluted edge. (Our camera is on the blink, so I’ve borrowed this image from their web site.) The package is just over 1 ounce and has three rounds.
The packaging doesn’t state the chocolate content, but the product web page reveals it to be 60%. Despite the claims on the package, I’m not sure I would call it exquisite chocolate, but it is very good – not too bitter or dry. The nibs are ground much more finely than the previous bar-with-nibs I’d eaten. They give it a gritty texture, but it’s gritty in a nice way, similar to toffee or nuts. I did end up with some nibs in my teeth – nib residue has a darkness to it, not the nuttiness it contributes to the bar. It wasn’t too bad, until I encountered one that felt more like a tough bit of pecan ‘divider’ (not the other shell, but the layer between pecan halves).

Endangered Species Chocolate is kind of pricey, but it’s ethically traded chocolate and generally quite delicious. From great responsibility comes great chocolate, and I like supporting that in a company!

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