Monday, January 17, 2011

Pacari Esmeraldas 60% Dark Chocolate

Today The Dark Chocolate Blog serves up the Pacari Esmeraldas straight from the Ecuadorian rainforest.

Manufacturer: Pacari
Cocoa Content: 60%
Location: Ecuador
Manufacturer Website
Rating: B

Today's tasting is the Esmeraldas, a 60% dark chocolate bar from Pacari. The Esmeraldas cocoa comes from the rainforest on the North coast of Ecuador. The chocolate bar is notably dark for only being a 60% cocoa, and has highlights of purples and reds.

The initial impression on the palate is a rich, sweet chocolate. There are notes of bread, sunflower kernels, earth and mint. The sweetness also leads to notes of caramel, toffee and "cream & sugar" coffee. The acidity level on this chocolate is fairly light. Chewing the Esmeraldas brings forward caramel as well as a faint berry note. The mouthfeel does have a slight graininess and waxiness to it. At the tail end the finish has cocoa and caramel that fades slowly and lingers for longer than I expected, given that this is a fairly mellow tasting chocolate.

The Pacari Esmeraldas is a decent tasting chocolate that seems to fall just a bit short. At 60% I find that the sweetness tends to mask some other flavors that want to peek out. There are some construction issues as well. Despite these caveats, this would be a good chocolate for those who are graduating from milk chocolates up to darker territories, especially with the notable caramel and toffee undertones.

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