/ Doug's Chocolate Republic /
Review: Whittaker Dark Block
Whittaker Dark Block
Posted: 19 January 2011
Whittaker's new Dark Block is, by the Chocolate Republic's assessment, new and improved. Although it's got just 3% more cocoa solids than the previous version, it doesn't taste as bitter. I found myself snacking on this one between paragraphs. I didn't notice this intermittent noshing with the original 47% bittersweet bar. Good riddance, oldie!
price/gram: USD 0.017
Cocoa %: 50
The Chocolate Republic hasn't
even been in existence that long, and already, I'm doing
Less than four months ago, I
Dark Block. Just a few days ago, another parcel of
chocolates landed at my doorstep anonymously, postmarked
from Bhutan. Inside were two Whittaker bars, two Lindt
bars, and four tiny Green & Black sampler bars. A note
accompanied the parcel. "Enjoy the calories, sucker,
as I diet on unhygienic Bhutanese food. Love,
Your Secret Admirer." Was it sarcastic love or true
love? Was this really sent from an admirer or a
psychopath bent on getting me fat?
Why worry about that, I
reasoned. Let me see if there were any chocolates in
the box worth reviewing. My eyes immediately caught
sight of this Dark Block bar. I hadn't particularly
adored it the first time. Was there a reason to review
The answer is yes. The Dark Block of months past was called the Bittersweet Dark Block
and clocked in with 47% cocoa solids. Today's Dark
Block measures in with 50% cocoa solids. Whittaker's couldn't add 10%
cocoa solids to the former total. It would've gotten
too dangerously close to their 62% blends on the market. That might've destroyed Whittaker's business model and sent
the New Zealand economy into a tailspin. Rumor has it that 75% of the New Zealand economy is based on Whittaker's sale of chocolates, and the
other 25% on sheep.
Whittaker's new Dark Block is, by the Chocolate Republic's assessment, new and improved. Although it's
got just 3% more cocoa solids than the previous version, it doesn't taste as bitter. I found myself snacking on this one between paragraphs. I didn't
notice this intermittent noshing with the original 47%
bittersweet bar.Good riddance, oldie!
The old wrapper wasn't as
attractive either. It showed three pieces of the Dark
Block -- because three pieces was all you'd eat before the
complaints started. This new version shows six pieces
of the block. Whittaker's is so confident you'll eat
twice the amount with each serving of the new bar.
I got to give Whittaker's
credit where credit is due. I wrote their marketing
manager after tasting their atrocious
Rum and Raisin,
made with the then prevalent 47% bittersweet. I got back a
friendly response that, distilled down to its basic
essences, meant "Thanks for contacting us. Your
feedback means so much to us. We care so very much
about your input . . ." Have you fallen asleep yet?
Maybe Whittaker's really is listening. Or if not
listening, at least tasting their own chocolates to look for
paths to improvements. Could the next step be a 50% Rum and
Raisin bar that would make a fruit-loving pirate proud?
Whittaker makes dark chocolate like a dark block that has 50% chocolate content. It's from New Zealand.
This is New Zealand chocolate and we go into it all at the chocolate republic with Doug of Doug's Republic