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favorite chocolate
May 6, 2004
2:11 pm
Hans-Peter Rot
USA
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What is everyone's favorite chocolate? I'm just curious to see what everyone's top 5 or top 10 is and what their current eats are right now. So come on and make those lists.

May 6, 2004
4:40 pm
alex_h
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ok, my top five are (very similar to the top 10 here):

1. puertomar - domori
2. porcelana - domori
3. porcelana - amedei
4. ampamakia 2003 - valrhona
5. rajoles 100% - rovira

how about yours, monte?

May 6, 2004
7:11 pm
Hans-Peter Rot
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My top 5 is as follows:

1. Cluizel Los Ancones
2. Amedei Chuao
3. Domori Puro
4. Domori Blend No. 1
5. Amedei Porcelana

Is that Rovira 100% really that good? I had a bar of the 70% last year, but I don't remember it much (mainly because I ate it too quickly heh). I remember a slight fruitiness at the end, with a fairly creamy texture.

May 7, 2004
12:15 pm
alex_h
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what happened: on my way home from work i stopped by the local snob delicatessen on the prowl for ampamakia and it turns out they've got a spanish week going on.
and they've got all sorts of rovira and it's cheaper than some of the other good stuff i know so i pick up a bar each of rajoles 70% and 100%, amazed that rovira makes 100% too! there is definitively a trend here.

the girl at the counter offers pieces of each for tasting and i think "why the heck not! save myself some money if they ain't any good."
she hasn't got the packaging anymore so it's guesswork as to what she's giving me. i try the first piece: shazaam! whew! this is certainly 100% and it is certainly easy to eat! i put away two pieces! nice, nice, nice.
next i try the 70%. again i am floored. it tastes so soft and sweet. is this milk-chocolate? but, of course, after eating 100% anything will taste sweet.
so's i go ahead and buy about 5 bars of each. the packaging is also nice and the chocolate looks great. i know a couple of people who are crazy for the pure stuff, so some will be gifts.

later i try the 70 again and find it's a good chocolate. has no high notes, but no low either. just a good chocolate.

end of long-winded story ;-)

next i will try puro again. to compare the two in fair competition.

May 8, 2004
2:37 pm
alex_h
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so, an update: compared rovira's 100% to some domori puro i bought yesterday. still like both much. domori's is a different kind of smooth. more on the thick and creamy side, kind of pastey on the tongue. and not bad at all! rovira's is "drier" and snappier not so much of the thud that domori has. puro has a nice nutty flavor to it that lingers quite a while.
i am beginning to eat this stuff like candy. yikes!

in other news: rovira's 70% rajoles is - after another taste (try and try again) - still a good bar. average, strong chocolate taste and satisfying.

May 10, 2004
3:05 pm
Hans-Peter Rot
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Did you taste mangoes or bananas in the Domori Puro? I agree that it's extremely pasty on the tongue; it totally coats the mouth with itself, and the flavor lingers for a long time. Slitti's 100% is the same way too, but the flavor is a bit different, not as good, imo. Slitti's tastes more like hazelnuts with a slight burnt overtone, which I don't particularly care for.

May 10, 2004
4:43 pm
alex_h
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hmm, no, not really. (but i did taste bananas and mangoes in cluizel's mangaro). i find it hard to define the taste of 100's and haven't found any fruit in them, which i am truthfully at the moment quite happy about. had a bit too much of the fruity stuff of late.
btw, you mentioned something similar if i remember correctly. this might interest you: i went out and bought valrhona's chuao and gran couva this weekend to test them both again. and was surprised how much my preception had changed over the last month or so.
the chuao i liked a lot. has more "earth" to it and warm coffee notes than i remembered, and was not bitter (as i recall mentioning here somewhere).
the gran couva is a fair chocolate but not really exciting. goes down without a lot of length and is so smoothe as to be almost imperceptible (a trait i find similarly in domori's puertofino).

seems my slitti's going to take a bit longer to get here than i hoped.
what's this i hear about slitti using artificial ingredients? can that be? or is it the same story as with cluizel and he "only" adds flavoring to some of his products and not his pure bars. i sure hope so and can't imagine any different.

i think i tried too much chocolate on saturday. i didn't even want to try a new order of domori yesterday. but this can only be temporary...

May 10, 2004
5:41 pm
Polarbear
Tromsø, Norway
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1. Chocolate society 67% organic (also sold under the Brand Claus Meyer in Denmark)
2. Cluizel Los Ancones
3. Valrhona Chuao (haven't tried the other manufacturer's versions)
4. Pronatec Nero
5. Marcolini Fleur de cacao

My name is Polarbear and I am a chocoholic...

*** My name is Polarbear and I am a chocoholic...
May 11, 2004
1:04 am
Lone Ly
Oslo, Norway
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My list is not comparable with yours as I haven't tried Marcolini and only two Domori, but anyway:

1. Domori Puertomar
1. Amedei Chuao
3. Domori Puertofino
4. Amedei Porcelana
5. ... oh no, I won't let any great ones out ... but Amedei 66% is not bad at all ...

"Man cannot live by chocolate alone - but woman can." (Unknown)
May 11, 2004
4:03 pm
Hans-Peter Rot
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With the unsweetened chocolate, I think it's more difficult to discern flavors because sugar and vanilla enhance and bring out flavors in the chocolate. Because they generally lack those two ingredients, it's therefore harder to detect subtle flavor nuances than in a sweetened bar.

My perceptions change for chocolate as well. At first, I really liked Cluizel's Amer Brut 72%, but I was turned away from it because the more I ate it, the more sour it tasted to me. Now, for some reason, that sourness has diminished, and now I have to re-evaluate this bar. Perhaps as our palates are introduced to new chocolates, our own preferences and tastes change; or perhaps, we become aclimated to a certain type of chocolate, that when we eat something different, the differences in flavors are that much more noticeable. Who knows.

Out of curiosity, how much chocolate did you consume on that fateful Saturday?

May 11, 2004
5:21 pm
alex_h
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hmmm, rings true what you say. as with all experience, we grow the more we try :-)

that fateful saturday? hmmm, let's see? i figure somewhere around 100g in all, which was a mix of everything between 100% and 64%. more the lesser than the greater. every now and then i get carried away. since then all has been calm on the western front... until now that is:

i just got my order from slitti! and i am between happy and not so amused. now i understand why you are munching 100% slitti: the other stuff has natural flavor added! but maybe i should relax before i go off. is natural flavor as unwanted as i think it is? i do think so! why be so mysterious about an ingredient? and can anyone tell me what it might be?

i will enjoy the 100 and the lattenero 70 though (the rest being 73% and 82%). i don't mind so much if milk chocolate ain't pure.

and i got slittosa. can't wait for a fine breakfast to try it!

May 11, 2004
8:51 pm
Altair
United Kingdom
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I haven't tried very many yet, but my current favourites are:

1. Bonnat Puerto Cabello
2. Cluizel Amer Brut 72%
3. Cluizel Los Ancones

And although they're not quite as interesting as the top three, I still really like:

4. Lindt 85%
5. Lindt 70%

No doubt things will change once I've had a chance to sample a few more.

May 12, 2004
6:12 pm
alex_h
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altair,
have you tried bonnat's madagascar? quite nice if you like a fruity taste.

i need to add a couple of chocolates to my list. these are more "basic eating" chocolates, though they are really good:

valrhona's chuao and
amedei's black tuscany 70% (lovely, lovely snap and munch)

and while i'm at it why not amedei's chuao, though in my taste it is really similar to amedei's porcelana. i must say, that all amedei chocolate has a distinct taste that goes through the chocolates i've tried. i find raisin in their porcelana, chuao and 70% black tuscany. and tobacco all over too! ("egads! is he insane??")

May 12, 2004
9:52 pm
Lone Ly
Oslo, Norway
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I agree with alex h, there is a distinct Amedei taste to all their bars, fruity tobacco-ish. But I like it. I also agree there isn't much difference between their Chuao and Porcelana although the Chuao reminds me of Valrhona's Chuao somehow.

"Man cannot live by chocolate alone - but woman can." (Unknown)
May 12, 2004
11:53 pm
Lorelei
Oslo, Norway
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My favourites are

1. Michel Cluizel - Los Ancones
2. Amedei - Toscano Black 66%

...so far. But why is the latter called "bitter" (se the top ten list)?? I don't find it bitter at all!

May 13, 2004
4:51 am
Hans-Peter Rot
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I think Amedei's Porcelana is quite distinct from the Chuao; it's much more delicate, not as intense as the Chuao, and it has a milder fruitiness. The inherent creaminess is also quite distinct, as well, and enhances the flavor, but the smokiness offsets the entire experience. OTOH, Chuao's flavor is more assertive, with a fruitiness reminiscent of blueberries, currants, and plums. I haven't tried other Amedei bars, but I plan to eventually.

May 13, 2004
4:11 pm
alex_h
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lorelei,

i don't know why they call it bitter either. i've tried 100% chocolate and don't consider it bitter.

monte,

you are the gourmet! i need to go back and compare the two. tonight maybe.

and i need to revise my current faves after trying some more...

1. porcelana - amedei
2. ampamakia 2003 - valrhona
2. black tuscano 70% - amedei
3. chuao 2003 - valrhona
4. rajoles 100% - rovira
5. puro - domori

just had a taste test here at the office and the results were disappointing for domori. one guy here said domori's porcelana tasted like potting soil and i found i had to agree. blasphemy? maybe, but i found i needed to re-evaluate. puertomar (a previous top fave) cut a bit better, but not much. both are really waxy and i got a bitterness that i hadn't tasted before.
evolution, eh? maybe next time i will throw ampamakia out of my list... ;-)

it really is interesting to get the reactions from others. every now and then i like some feedback from different people. this keeps it all a bit more lively.

May 13, 2004
10:30 pm
Altair
United Kingdom
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quote:


Originally posted by alex_h

altair,
have you tried bonnat's madagascar? quite nice if you like a fruity taste.

So far I haven't tried very much at all - I've only become interested in fine chocolate very recently, and I haven't had much money to spend on it. I get paid tomorrow, and I want to put in another order at seventypercent, so I'll probably be trying some more bars from Bonnat and the Domori Blend No 1.

I'll get some more Los Ancones too - it edged into second place on my list today.

May 14, 2004
3:48 am
Hans-Peter Rot
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Wow, Amedei's Porcelana edged out over their Chuao? Once http://www.chocosphere.com gets their Domori page up, I'm ordering their Porcelana, Puertomar, Puertofino, along with more Amedei, and perhaps the Valrhona Chuao. Then I will have a comprehensive taste test. Which Amedei is better? The 66% or the 70%?

Altair, if you can, get the Ilha Toma; although it's out of production, there might be some backstock left. I started my last bar today, and it's much more complex than I remembered. Buttery overtone throughout with slight blueberry nuance and even spice cake (such as a fresh lebkuchen flavored with sweet tangerine). Caramel peaks in as well, but that's no surprise because of the buttery flavor. It truly is better than the bar that has replaced it (Tamarina). Cluizel really goofed with that...I just hope he has good reason.

May 14, 2004
3:32 pm
alex_h
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yup! i never had their chuao in my list. blame my taste buds :-)
i'm not so keen on porcelana by domori anymore either. maybe i should let a little time pass between posts. i find my taste is very volatile. i knocked down puertomar yesterday just to find it nice again today.
when it comes to chuao i like valrhona's. i get more taste and it's a lot cheaper than amedei! ;-)
i've only had a square or two of amedei's 66% and can't really say. sometimes squares just don't quite do it. and, aside from that, i try to stick to my self-imposed limit of nothing less than 70. yes, i have a lot of "rules" to keep myself from running all over the planet and spending loads of money. i find i need to limit myself. aaaand usually most stuff under 70 is just too sweet for me. i make an exception for valrhona (chuao and ampamakia).

fascinating how different chocolatiers have a characteristic taste throughout their range of chocolates. i've noticed domori has a distinct nutty taste between porcelana and puro, amedei has tobacco and raisin and cluizel has this and valrhona that. pretty soon i'll be able to tell you by taste who made what ;-)

how do you draw up your list of faves? what influences you? just the taste and all that?

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