A Chocolate Review from a Chocolate Snob
Hello, I'm A Chocolate Snob
Hi, My name is Lisa, and I'm a chocolate snob. I admit it - instead of blood, I have thick, silky chocolate syrup running through my veins. But I can't help it - really, I can't. I inherited the "chocolate gene" from my father - another admitted chocolate snob. However, unlike me, he has progressed through the "ten step program", and is now "chocolate friendly"; meaning he's yet to meet anything chocolate he didn't like. Me? Well, even though I'm not a fine chocolate connosieur, I still have a rather discerning palate for what I think is and ISN'T acceptable in the chocolate world. Therefore, I remain, a chocolate snob. However, I have come across a rare anomaly in the chocolate world - an inexpensive chocolate bar that rivals even the snobbiest of snobby chocolate. Therefore, I must, without hesitation, give my honest and highly acclaimed review of this amazing discovery.
Not By Choice, But By Chance
It all started when I mentioned to my husband that I was out of chocolate. This is quite a big deal, considering I ALWAYS have either a Ghiradelli or other fine chocolate bar to indulge in when I relax with a glass of my favorite Merlot or Chianti. Some people smoke or pig out on potato chips; but me - I'm a chocolate lover and my obsession, my "fix", if you will, is chocolate. But not just ANY cheap, run of the mill chocolate. It HAS to be of high, quality standards. And usually quite expensive - at least expensive for my budget anyway!
So to be out of "good chocolate" it is quite the catastrophe! And my husband, being the sweet, sensitive, always-thinking-of-me husband that he is, remembered my dilemma on his next trip to the grocery store. That's when the fates stepped in and he met with this unexpected chocolate destiny! Naturally, this particular grocery store did not carry my beloved Ghiradelli and he knew the "others" just would not do. But as chance (or fate?) would have it, he came upon a chocolate outsider subtly begging to be noticed. His eyes zeroed in on the "dark chocolate" that shouted loud and clear from the wrapper. Knowing whatever he brought home HAD to be dark chocolate, he stopped to examine it a little closer. "Fine European Chocolate", "Simpy the Best Chocolate on Earth", and the snobby picture of two rich, decadent chunks of chocolate posing royally against a dark walnut brown wrapper caught his eye. (Of course the fact that it was also on the $1 aisle, didn't hurt any!) He checked his watch. Time was of the essence as I had been known to go into "chocolate DT's" if I didn't get my daily "fix". He grabbed the bar and proceeded to checkout, hoping his choice would suffice - at least temporarily.
Honey, Look What I Got You!
My husband loves to surprise me - especially when he knows its something I'm not expecting. And while I wasn't exactly in a deep depression from not having any chocolate, I must admit I wasn't feeling "up to par" without it. So, while I wasn't exactly desperate, I missed settling back with a glass of wine and a rich, deep dark square of my favorite chocolate - Ghiradelli Sea Salt Soiree with Almonds. However, at this point, I was willing to accept a reasonable substitute. And that's exactly what he brought me. Actually, it was MORE than reasonable - it was actually much better! But when I first saw the unknown brand, and he told me that it only cost $1, my heart sank and I just knew it wasn't going to measure up. I even dreaded having to lie and tell him how "good" it was, just to keep from hurting his feelings. But I decided to give it a chance and if nothing else, maybe it would be a good "standby" for the next time I ran out of the Ghiradelli. Reluctantly, I picked up the unfamiliar chocolate bar intruder and tore open the wrapper. It was time to put my snobby chocolate taste palate to the test!
Map of Europe
Upon opening the package, I immediately noticed the dark, rich brown color of the chocolate candy inside. I lightly sniffed and was pleasantly surprised by the hearty, dark chocolate aroma that quickly filtered up my nose. I broke off four small squares - my usual portion. Not expecting to even like it, I hesitantly bit a small corner and let the candy slowly roll back on my tongue. I'm not sure what I was expecting, as I was in the process of walking from one room to another, but I suddenly felt compelled to stop in my tracks and savor the bold burst of chocolate that had just invaded my mouth! For lack of a better word, "wow" was the only one I could come up with in my dazed and surprised state. This chocolate bar was actually pretty good! I broke off another chunk with my teeth and let the flavors slowly melt on my tongue; like I was savoring a fine wine. Immediately, I noticed hints of rich dark chocolate - not bitter or pungent like the regular cacoa chocolate I was used to, but rather like a silky, smooth dark chocolate flavor - much like the chocolately filling in a homemade chocolate pie! The flavor intensified as it melted on my tongue, and left me wanting more. "This is really good chocolate", I mentioned to my husband, who was now grinning like a proud possum for having made such a winning selection. "It's made in Poland", he proudly announced. I glanced at the packaging and noticed that it was indeed, a product of Poland. Hmm? Who knew? But, that's not so unusual. After all, it did say it was "fine European chocolate", and Poland is in Europe, so who's to say the Polish don't know anything about making fine chocolate? Certainly not THIS chocolate snob!
The Chocolate Snob's Review
So, naturally, the next step was to write a thorough and unbiased review of this unknown and relatively unheard of chocolate delight, so that other chocolate snobs might experience this surprisingly tasty chocolate sensation for themselves! And while this product certainly won't win any "Chocolatier Bar of the Year" award, or be a hit at Valentines, it is certainly a bar that can stand on its own and measure up to THIS chocolate snob's requirements of a rich, satisfying and delicious dark chocolate candy.
And while it will most definitely will NEVER be a replacement for my Ghiradelli Sea Salt with Almonds bar, its good to know that I can find a satisfying and inexpensive chocolate bar at my local grocer's that will not only be a pleasant substitute, but also have potential to be a main ingredient in many of my chocolate dessert and candy recipes. I can even see this a great dipping chocolate for strawberries, pineapples and other "dippable desserts!"
And the best part of it all? It only costs a buck! Maybe the Europeans know something after all about what makes a "fine chocolate bar"!