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Home / Doug's Chocolate Republic  /   Review: Theo Dark Chocolate

     
Theo Dark Chocolate 
Posted: 25 November 2011    7.0 
Theo Dark Chocolate Finally tasting Theo's Dark Chocolate on its own, naked, bear, like a young babe coming into this world, I realized that this Dark could hold its own. This is a Dark you don't have to be ashamed to be seen in public with.   
Avg price/gram: USD 0.048   Cocoa %: 70  Size: 84g   
       


Theo and I had grown closer over the last month-and-a-half.   I loved their commitment to organic and fair trade and their chocolate wrappers, while understated, conveyed the simplicity of the brand.  If a manufacturer is only using all-natural and organic ingredients in its dark chocolate, the ingredient list is very, very simple: cocoa beans, sugar, cocoa butter, and ground vanilla bean.   No unintelligible contents, Eurostyle, like "E153" (artificial brown color, in case you, like the rest of Europe, didn't know) and "E323" (lactates).      

I was surprised that this was one of the last three American chocolate bars left in my refrigerator. In a typical tasting, I would've sampled this bar sooner, before I tried Theo's Coconut and Orange, both of which used this 70% organic dark as a base.  I'd want to see how the base stood on its own before sampling it with additional flavorings and fillings.  Burma Mike just brought over so much chocolate at once that there was no perfect way and order to sample it all. 

I normally prefer a dark chocolate bar with something extra added to it.  Scharffen Berger's Semisweet is good; its Nibby (the Semisweet with cacao nibs added) is even better. Finally tasting Theo's Dark Chocolate on its own, naked, bear, like a young babe coming into this world, I realized that this Dark could hold its own. You see ever so clearly that the coconut detracts from its flavor and the orange contributes nothing but drips and drabs of vitamin C on the tongue.  This is a Dark you don't have to be ashamed to be seen in public with.         

I've eaten better darks, but these darks had access to more ammunition, so to speak.  They weren't organic, fair trade, and weren't beholden to really being all natural.  Any chef can cheat and make his recipes taste better by sneaking in some MSG.   Theo doesn't cheat.  Their dark can compete, taste for taste, with the more famous Green & Black's and, in this cacao range, outperforms the more famous Lindt and the vastly overrated Swedish Marabou.

This is an American brand, barely known outside its own state of Washington, that can take on, dark to dark, some of the European big boys. Tomorrow's European generation of chocolate manufacturers may think about coming to the United States for their chocolate apprenticeships rather than the other way around.   

If you liked reading this, consider savoring these reviews:
 Whittakers Dark Ghana from New Zealand -- 72% cocoa solids
 Scharffen Berger Semisweet from USA -- 62% cocoa solids
 The Complete Chocolate Republic Index


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The Harry Dandruff Universe

  chocolate out of Washington is Theo. I like it dark. Dark chocolate from Theo shows that American chocolate that is organic and fair trade is tasty and can be dark chocolate. Make it dark and you are set, maestro!