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Home / Doug's Chocolate Republic  /   Review: Lotte Ghana Mild

Lotte Ghana Mild 
Posted: 20 November 2010    5.0 
Lotte Ghana Mild How does Ghana Mild stack up? Let's just say it's mild on the quality.    
Avg price/gram: USD 0.023   Cocoa %: 25  Size: 60g  Korean chocolate 

Trudging along with the Korean chocolates I picked up on a 5-day visit to Korea, I ripped open the Ghana Mild bar made by the Korean-Japanese mega conglomerate Lotte.  This bar, like all of Lotte's offerings, is nicely packaged -- bold fonts, cute graphics.  

It's got a Korean feel to the core.  When I first visited Korea in 1993, well before it got to its current stage of having 1.1 million foreign residents living there, I noticed that it was cool for manufacturers to list some kind of catchphrase or slogan line in English.  It didn't matter if the product was to be sold only in Korea and only to Koreans.  Some sort of English text was obligatory to make the product stand out.  In '93, this text was usually grammatically incorrect and made no sense.  Since then, the grammar has been edited, but the lines still make no sense or if they do, they're close to meaningless.   

The nation's distinctively average Cass beer reads "Ultimate refreshment with crisp and fizzy taste."  I cannot think of an American beer manufacturer thinking this phrase so clever as to slam it on millions of bottles of its beer.  Lotte's Mild Cacao reads "Let's feel its richness of cacao mixed with the mild taste," a phrase that barely makes sense and, if you do happen to make sense of it, sounds utterly ridiculous.

Korean labeling laws, like American ones, do not require manufacturers to list the cocoa solid content on the chocolate packages.  Though I bought the bar in Korea, I was able to find a smaller version of this bar on sale in our local import supermarket in Thailand along with the Ghana Black and the Crunky.  Now knowing the exact cocoa solid content of these bars, I was able to make damned good educated guesses, award-winning ones some would say, about the cocoa solid content in the rest of my Korean collection.  If I were British, such efforts might earn me a knighthood some day.

Enough history.  How does Ghana Mild stack up?  Let's just say it's mild on the quality.  This being my fifth Korean bar in two days, I realized once and for all that Korean and Japanese chocolate has a unique slickly manufactured and clean taste I'll call the flavor of Korjap. On a blind taste test of international chocolates, I don't think I could separate a Meiji from a Lotte from a Glico, but I could tell you which was Korjap. 

The Ghana Mild is thin, possesses a nice snap, and goes down without complaint, but its got nothing unique whatsoever to remember it by, a hallmark of Korjap brands.  Try Ghana Mild once, and you'll think you've already tried it. 

If you liked reading this, consider savoring these reviews:
 Valrhona Guanaja from France -- 70% cocoa solids
 Babaevsky Dark Almond from Russian Federation -- 55% cocoa solids
 The Complete Chocolate Republic Index

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Insights From A Travel Mastermind

  Korea is home to Lotte, a Korean conglomerate. How is Korean chocolate? Try the mild cacao Ghana Mild. The chocolate has mild cacao. Let the chocolate republic review it all with Doug of Doug's Republic