If Arriba already were an intimidating looking bar, at 90% it looks even more so, and Slittiâ€™s masterful temper and mold make the visual appeal all the more magnificent. Continuing this trend, the aroma is simply seductive yet ironically sweet in some regards, as blackberries dominate with hints of cinnamon and sweet coffee. Despite the power behind the aroma, however, something about it is sweeter than one would expect, that perhaps at 90% the bar might not be as strong as the percentage suggests.
This is an assumption one should never make! The chocolate is bold beyond belief, weighing down the tongue like a ton of bricks, so powerful and deep this tone is. Sweet cinnamon starts off the flavor, though, then mellows into tropical fruits and finally the blackberries we all know and love from Arriba with some floral highlights as well, but for the most part, the bar is intense and chocolaty, with blackberries dominating but not in an aggressive way.
At this level, the texture is dead-on pasty and thick, melting at such a reluctant speed that the intensity is made even more intense. At long last, the definitive Arriba has arrived, and delivered by none other than Slitti, who with a 90% shows how to treat this varietal: with force. Force, then, seems to be the key to achieving great things with this cacao, since at this level the cacaoâ€™s natural intensity is maximized and the flavor components kept at a minimum without much concern over complexity or fancy embellishments. A lesson is to be learned here, but at such an inaccessible percentage, sadly, many may not pay attention.