A bar that really fits the description on its package. Unusual in having both fruity and spicy components. Perhaps not as polished as others in the Cluizel 1er Cru line, it offers a different experience from the usual very “saturated” Cluizel style – a chocolate in pastel shades.
Hans-Peter Rot: 5-Jun-2007
Maralumi flaunts a resplendent and gorgeous sheen that glows with a medium brown color tinted by bright orange. The aroma is a shade lighter, mostly brown and suggesting acid, reminding me of hay and dates, with a touch of orange and a smidgen of smokiness underneath. It’s strong and definitely interesting, to say the least, suggesting some sort of anomalous flavor and possibly questionably processed beans.
Anomalous, yes, since the flavor is only a faint reflection of the aroma. Red fruits such as strawberries are the backdrop for the majority of the length, which are then combined with blueberries and sweet spice, ala Guittard’s Ambanja. But all the while, thereĂ˘â‚¬â„˘s a peculiar smokiness lurking in the background, almost invisible from the tongue but definitely present, suggesting that indeed there are beans in here that need to be hidden. As the profile draws near an end, bananas assume control until raisins dominate the finish.
Maralumi has a cheerful flavor and a soft-spoken but charismatic personality that glows exorbitantly the more you taste it. In other words, it just grows on you. As soft-spoken as this chocolate may be, however, it is this subtlety that might deter a few people from making this bar a frequent munchĂ˘â‚¬â€ťbasically, you have to search for flavor because it wonĂ˘â‚¬â„˘t come to you. The texture surely does nothing to help the situation either. ItĂ˘â‚¬â„˘s excessively thick and almost waxy, melting reluctantly and requiring great effort. It might distract you from the task at hand. As a result, the chocolateĂ˘â‚¬â„˘s charm might not shine through as clearly as I said it would, so please keep this in mind when tasting.
Alex Rast: 22-Feb-2006
From the outset it seems clear that this is almost a prototype for Cluizel. The bar diverges in appearance from Cluizel’s characteristic ultra-fine finish – looking almost muddy, as if it were mixed with brown sugar. More bubbles than usual for Cluizel further hint at a more experimental character.
Aroma is strong and reinforces the feeling that it was made with brown sugar, with a hint of that scent mixed with a slight smokiness colouring a primary, monotone woody smell. It’s almost like the smell from a barbeque.
The flavour, by contrast, isn’t particularly strong. After a brief initial taste of tropical fruits, comparable to Carenero Superior, the main component becomes an intense, creamy wave, followed by a cinnamon kick that finally evolves into a cherry/currant persistence. None of the flavours here are really assertive, even though many of them in a more typical chocolate would
be very strong, such as the cinnamon and the cherry. It’s nice to experience these flavours in a milder form.
Texture is a step below Cluizel’s normal. While it is smoother than average, it lacks the silken texture of other Cluizel bars and indeed it is only about as creamy as average, suggesting perhaps a lower cocoa butter content. Again, one gets the feeling of a chocolate fresh off an experimental batch run – as if one were being introduced to a new chocolate he was playing
around with. This is the overall impression you leave with – a first experiment, with promise but also with room for improvement.