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Home / Doug's Chocolate Republic  /   Review:  Tesco Organic Ecuadorean 39% Milk Chocolate

     
Tesco Organic Ecuadorean 39% Milk Chocolate 
Posted: 26 December 2011    6.5 
Tesco Organic Ecuadorian 39% Milk Chocolate This milk chocolate bar from Tesco is both Fairtrade (75% of the beans anyway) and organic, two infectious buzzwords most chocolate manufacturers cannot lay claim to.   Tesco scores another coup with the high cocoa solid content.  The resultant milk chocolate is smooth and slightly sweet, good enough while making you feel even better because you're eating Fairtrade and organic and can (ridiculously) justify this as good for your diet 
Avg price/gram: USD 0.022   Cocoa %: 39  Size: 100g  British chocolate 
       


Since the Chocolate Republic's inception fifteen months ago, I've watched the chocolate landscape change for the better in Thailand.  Prices haven't fallen for the Lindts and Guylians and Freys.  In the luxury end, there's really not more and better chocolates available.  No, what's changed is that the big retail marketing powerhouses in Thailand, with their headquarters in Europe, have started offering in-house brands at very attractive prices.        

Carrefour started doing it before they leapt out of Thailand completely.  Big C has started to offer their Casino bars.  And now marketing mammoth from the UK, Tesco, through its Thai operations of Tesco-Lotus, is selling Tesco branded chocolate bars in Thailand at about the same price as Big C is selling Casino bars at its stores.       

Grocery stores always offered in-house brands. Back when I was a kid, there was generic stuff.  You picked up a can of tomato sauce and the can, in plain white label with black lettering, read "TOMATO SAUCE."   This was like something you'd see out of George Orwell or Aldous Huxley, a sterile emotionless future.  Grocery store execs in the 1980's must've comprehended that appearance had something to do with a product's appeal and the bland generic labels became more colorful and started to resemble the look and feel of any other brand, only the brand was now the grocery store hawking the product.    

The products grocery stores self branded were typically not on the high-end.  They were products consumers had a need for but weren't necessarily obsessed with buying the best.  A self branded tomato sauce, toothpaste, or spice mix was sufficient for Joe Average.

And that's why it's such a surprise to see that in-house brands are now moving into products beyond the mere basics, the lowest common denominator acceptable.  This milk chocolate bar from Tesco is both Fairtrade (75% of the beans anyway) and organic, two infectious buzzwords most chocolate manufacturers cannot lay claim to.  Tesco packs a lot of punch into this bar.  Their recipe uses single origin Arriba beans from Ecuador, a nice change from the mass produced African forastero beans.

Tesco scores another coup with the high cocoa solid content.   39% is high for a milk, almost the same content as Cadbury UK's Bourneville 'dark' range.  The resultant milk chocolate is smooth and slightly sweet, good enough while making you feel even better because you're eating Fairtrade and organic and can (ridiculously) justify this as good for your diet.  Diet, no; for the pocket book, yes.  Tesco gives everyone a good reason to chow down on organic with this one.         

If you liked reading this, consider savoring these reviews:
 Seattle Chocolate Company Pike Place Espresso from USA -- 53% cocoa solids
 Equal Exchange Mint from USA -- 67% cocoa solids
 The Complete Chocolate Republic Index


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  Tesco from the UK now offers its own brand of chocolate. It's got milk cause it's milk chocolate. The beans are Arriba from Ecuador and the chocolate is organic and fairtrade, my man.