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Australia has a line of chocolates under the Cocoa Farm label produced by Farm By Nature. It's Australian chocolate, all right. Wine chocolate infused with Shiraz. Doug at the Chocolate Republic, a subsite of Doug's Republic tells you all about it.

Home / Doug's Chocolate Republic  /   Review: Cocoa Farm Shiraz

     
Cocoa Farm Shiraz 
Posted: 8 October 2010    7.5 
Cocoa Farm Shiraz The wine inclusion would be a one-off taste scam if the chocolate were bad. It's not. Add in the grape seed extract, natural vanilla, and Shiraz-infused raisins (12% raisin content, minimum), and you're in for a delicious sampling.    
Avg price/gram: USD 0.06   Cocoa %: 36  Size: 100g  Australian chocolate 
       


In today's highly competitive chocolate market, innovative combos are the ways manufacturers strive to get your attention.  The good old days when a slimy milk or a light skinned dark, a few nut bars, and a white would content the masses are long, long gone. 

Putting liqueurs in chocolate is old news.  Consumers have been there and done that.  But the idea of getting alcohol into chocolate in new ways is always welcomed.   Rum & raisin has become an accepted new combination.  Finnish candy maker Fazer now makes Finlandia vodka filled chocolates.  Why not wine in chocolate? 

It's so stupendously obvious, why hasn't anyone thought to do this on a large scale before?  It's a great gimmick to catch jaded consumers' attentions, and in a country like Australia where everyone and his cousin and his cousin's mistress owns a vineyard and wine gluts are common, an excellent way to get rid of some surplus Australian wines.   Furthermore, it gives the manufacturer double the bragging rights.  They can boast about cacao being so high in antioxidants and grapes being high in them, too.  Dumb consumers can think they're getting healthier with every bite! 

Cocoa Farm out of Victoria produces a wine chocolate.  It's mainly for the patriotic Aussie but I saw a few bars for sale in my local and very expensive foreign import market in Thailand.  I inquired if Aussie Dave had ever heard of this manufacturer, and it turned out Cocoa Farm's offices were but a stone's throw away from where he lived.  He visited their offices within 24 hours and picked up two bars for me. 

The wine infusion process mimics what manufacturers do to create rum & raisin bars.  Dried grapes (= raisins) are soaked in wine and then immersed in the chocolate.  The rum & raisin bars contain 1% rum.  These bars contain 2% wine.  The alcohol content is less than 0.5% by volume or by weight.  You won't get drunk munching one of these.  I think even a Mormon or Jehovah's Witness could get away eating this without violating their holy dictates.

The wine inclusion would be a one-off taste scam if the chocolate were bad. It's not. Add in the grape seed extract, natural vanilla, and Shiraz-infused raisins (12% raisin content, minimum), and you're in for a delicious sampling.  I would've rated the bar even higher if not for its price, which could scare away consumers more than the Blob, the Loch Ness Monster, Bigfoot, and John Travolta's acting combined.  Over here in Thailand, each 100 gram bar costs the equivalent of AUD 5.33, an already sky high price next to the limited range of Swiss and German chocolates on display.  Thailand is famous for its high excise duties and import tariffs, so I figured the chocolate would sell in Oz for 30-50% less.  Remarkably, the chocolate costs 23% more in the land of its birth than it does in the uncompetitive Thai market where all imports induce tears.  Australian chocoholics consuming these delicious bars are paying a hefty premium to do so. They shouldn't mind too much.  Their federal government in Canberra taxes them to death already. 

If you liked reading this, consider savoring these reviews:
 Haigh Milk Chocolate from Australia -- 32% cocoa solids
 Casino White Caramelized Coconut from France -- 21% cocoa solids
 The Complete Chocolate Republic Index


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  Australia has a line of chocolates under the Cocoa Farm label produced by Farm By Nature. It's Australian chocolate, all right. Wine chocolate infused with Shiraz. Doug at the Chocolate Republic, a subsite of Doug's Republic tells you all about it.