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Home / Doug's Chocolate Republic  /   Review: Duc De Praslin Ecuador 71%

     
Duc De Praslin Ecuador 71% 
Posted: 24 July 2011    6.5 
Duc De Praslin Ecuador 71% It's actually a significant risk for Duc De Praslin to base a dark bar around fickle Ecuadorean cacao, and I can't remark it's a failed experiment. On one hand, this was the best Duc De Praslin of the eight I sampled. On the other, I cannot claim that this is because of the Ecuadorean cacao.     
Avg price/gram: USD 0.056   Cocoa %: 71  Size: 45g   
       


Ecuadorean cacao!  Mmmmmm.   Sounds impressive, doesn't it?  Gallothai was impressed enough to manufacture a 71% cocoa solid bar around it.  That's a lot like casting an unknown actor in a $100 million Hollywood blockbuster directed and produced by unknowns.

Chocolate regionsGallothai says "This high cocoa content chocolate distinguishes itself by its softness and subtle aromas."  Could those aromas possibly be of cacao drying on side of the road contaminated by gasoline and diesel fumes and smoke from burning agriculture?  Gallothai goes on to add that "a hint of earth gives it the finishing touch."  Could the hint of earth be an Ecuadorean pack mule that defecated next to the batch of drying beans laid out on a volleyball court?

Fine aroma Arriba cacao comes from Ecuador, and Ecuador is the largest grower of fine flavor cacao in the world.  Did you know that?  I bet you also didn't know that Ecuador is devoid of standards regarding quality and grading.  Beans may not be properly fermented and dried.      

So it's actually a significant risk for Duc De Praslin to base a dark bar around fickle Ecuadorean cacao, and I can't remark it's a failed experiment.  On one hand, this was the best Duc De Praslin of the eight I sampled.  On the other, I cannot claim that this is because of the Ecuadorean cacao.   This bar tasted much like the Carrefour Bio bar I sampled three months ago, which has roughly the same cocoa solid content.  I doubt Carrefour is sourcing their cacao from Ecuador, but rather, using a mainstream source from Ghana or the Ivory Coast. I rated Carrefour's bar higher because it was 40% of the cost of this one.           

I mentioned reasons in my Duc De Praslin Peru review why a non bean-to-bar manufacturer was probably facing an uphill battle trying to educate the public about the different characteristics of world cacaos when it did not handle every step of the chocolate making process itself.  The Ecuador bar is a satisfying, if not expensive, feed.

If a gun were put to your head, ordering you to buy one Duc De Praslin bar, this would be the one.  Consider it mind candy though.  You'll be no wiser about South America after the last bite.       

If you liked reading this, consider savoring these reviews:
 Frey Saveur Du Chili from Switzerland -- 55% cocoa solids
 Dove Hazelnut, Almond, and Raisin from China -- 22% cocoa solids
 The Complete Chocolate Republic Index


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