Sea Salt & Nibs
Cocoa Beans, Sugar, Cocoa Butter, Sunflower Lecithin, Sea Salt
This is another bar I nabbed on my chocolate shopping trip. I’ve actually seen this one before at my local natural foods store, so I was excited to try it.
Unlike the Schogetten bar that I tasted and reviewed last time, this bar is more up my alley in terms of what I want to see in a chocolate bar. It is craft, bean to bar, and on top of that, partially produced in its country of origin, Madagascar! The Madécasse website has some more information on what that means.
Madécasse chocolate is Direct Trade(as noted on the front of the bar label), which is slightly different than Fair Trade. There’s a lot of different explanations of this floating around on the web, but Direct Trade seems to focus on a small scale, is less expensive than Fair Trade certification, and has an emphasis on quality. At the root, both types of trade are working to help farmers sustain themselves.
Done with the back info, onto the chocolate.
First thing first. Packaging!
Look at that texture! I love good packaging and this Madécasse packaging is lovely. It’s got a nice paper/parchment texture. It’s easy to read and see what kind of bar it is and the teal color is very appealing! A chocolate maker has to see their product with the packaging to start and I think Madécasse did a good job with this bar.
On to the actual chocolate.
As soon as I opened up the package I got a really nice chocolaty aroma. Just a warm cocoa smell that was lovely.
The bar looked nice with a semi gloss temper, once again very different from the matte texture of the Schogetten bar.
The chocolate tastes okay. It’s not mind blowing, but there’s nothing wrong with it either. The chocolate smell that was so strong when I opened the package didn’t carry as well through to tasting as I would have liked. It also wasn’t the smoothest melting bar I’ve had, but on the other hand it’s not gritty or rough either. It could be slightly better in both of those aspects, but it is a long way away from being bad in any sense.
The inclusions on the back of this bar were a little peculiar in how they were distributed though. There were four little piles on the back of the bar, so it didn’t actually have even coverage of the entire bar. Honestly, I was kind of put off, assuming I was going to end up with bites that were uneven or didn’t have inclusions in them at all. Really, I didn’t even notice any substantial difference in texture from bite to bite.
The cocoa nibs were good with their semi crunchy texture adding some contrasting mouth feel to the smoother chocolate. The salt was lacking a little in my opinion. While I didn’t notice texture between each nibble being too different, I did notice when I didn’t get those little bursts of salt in some bites. I like salt though, so I will accept my bias on that point.
Final verdict? I like this bar, but I don’t know if I would get it again. It’s good, but it lacks that spark that would keep me craving more and more, unlike say Tony’s Chocolonely Pecan Coconut bar(which I have purchased multiple times since my initial review). Maybe it’s the lack of salt, or the texture of the chocolate, I can’t say for certain.
However, if you like cocoa nibs and salt(but not toooo much salt), then I would say go for it! It has a pretty low price point and it’s a good combination that just might be what you’re looking for.