Doug's Republic chocolate

   print this page   email this page   bookmark this page  subscribe to this site with an RSS feed  Feedburner Link

Bookmark and Share                                                            

 
Doug's Republic Home
Doug's Travel Stuff
Doug's Beer Republic
Doug's Chocolate Republic
- Chocolate Republic Homepage
- Overview
- Ratings Explained
- Big Guys vs Small Guys
- Chocolate Republic TV
- Search By Chocolate Bar Specs

Contact
Fair dinkum, mate. Keywords1

Home / Doug's Chocolate Republic  /   Review:  Madecasse 70% Cocoa

     
Madecasse 70% Cocoa 
Posted: 26 July 2012    9.0
Madecasse 70% Cocoa from Madagascar The 70% is at the entrance of heavy dark territory.  And yet the chocolate is no more bitter than a 50% made by lesser operators.  Madagascan cacao is known for its fruity character and it lessens the acidity you'd typically experience with a bar this dark. If Madecasse's milk chocolate is a "dark" milk chocolate, as they describe it, their 70% dark is a light dark chocolate.   
Avg price/gram: USD 0.079   Cocoa %: 70  Size: 75g   
       


In sampling Madecasse's Arabica Coffee and Cinnamon & Sakay, I've developed a respect for the fledgling brand.   Besides doing the blends right, using delicious coffee nibs, sea salt, cinnamon, and indigenous ingredients like sakay, Madecasse has proven it can make both a delicious milk-chocolate based bar and a darker bar.      

Considering the company already makes a 63% blend bar with nothing added to it, it's surprising to also see a 70% bar on the product list.  Both 63% and 70% are in the same 'dark' range. Take Whittaker's.  They manufacture a 62% bar, the Dark Cacao.   And also a 72%, the Dark Ghana.  That's 10 points between the two, quite normal.  Plenty of brands offer both a 70% and an 80%.  But a 63% and a 70% as well as a 75%?  Only masters like La Molina attempt this.  Madecasse is marching to the beat of their own Djembe drum.        

The 70% is at the entrance of heavy dark territory.  You don't use bittersweet as an adjective with cacao solids over 70%.   And yet the chocolate is no more bitter than a 50% made by lesser operators.  My wife doesn't like real dark chocolate.  I force fed bits of the 70%, and she, too, agreed that this was light on the mouth. Madagascan cacao is known for its fruity character and it lessens the acidity you'd typically experience with a bar this dark.   If the Madecasse's milk chocolate is a "dark" milk chocolate, as they describe it, their 70% dark is a light dark chocolate.        

The downside to these delicious bars is the price tag.  Madecasse tries to keep the prices down by offering the bars in 75 gram sizes vs the more typical 100 grams.  You're more liable to cut the guys some slack because of their social mission to enrich the local Madagascan population.  If the founders had a different view and were instead living in penthouses in Antananarivo and driving Bentleys along the Avenue of the Baobabs, I doubt the firm would be getting the press it has.  My brother recently informed me that a homemade sorbet shop in San Francisco is already making a sorbet with Madecasse chocolate.  That's some accomplishment.  It took Ferrero Rocher more than a decade before anyone started making gelato with their delicious treats.

Cinagra Tsar NoirNow here's the million dollar question -- or $5.95 question, the retail price for a bar of Madecasse.  Madecasse's chocolates are actually made by Cinagra, another bean-to-bar operator in Madagascar that precedes Madecasse's conception.  Is Madecasse's brilliance due to innovative chocolate recipes and methods of their own devising or Cinagra's expertise?  Someday I'd like to settle that question on the Chocolate Republic.  For now, Cinagra seems to be notoriously difficult to find outside Madagascar.  Visit their web site as of this writing, and you'll just see a generic page marker which reads "This is the future home page location for Chocolaterie Cinagra," with a picture of a chocolate bar that looks exactly like a Madecasse bar with its chocolate pod icon on each morsel.       

The Chocolate Republic's theory is that the two brands wouldn't differ much in taste, that the reason Cinagra agreed to make chocolate for Madecasse under a different and potentially competing brand name is because Cinagra's brands of Tsar, Eben, and Palissandre have virtually no presence in foreign markets or the sales resources to deepen foreign presences. Cinagra currently exports to France, Mauritius, South Africa, and the US.  I expect they do so in very tiny quantities to small boutique shops.  Meanwhile, Madecasse, at just four years old, has already secured a deal to have their bars distributed by Whole Foods, a major US wholesome food chain, and has won over sorbet makers use bars to create new desserts.  Cinagra likely wanted to ride this potential gravy train, even if it meant riding it in the background.

Co-founder Tim McCollum has said, "This is, believe it or not, the only fine chocolate made in all of Africa," conveniently forgetting that Cinagra has its own brands of fine chocolate made in Africa and that Chocolaterie Robert has been making chocolate in Madagascar since 1937 with organic beans grown in the Sambirano region.     

Ignore the hype and marketing rhetoric.  Enjoy the flavors.      

If you liked reading this, consider savoring these reviews:
 Cadbury Old Jamaica Rum N Raisin from Australia -- 37% cocoa solids
 Nestle Red Bean Sandwich Kit Kat from Japan -- 21% cocoa solids
 The Complete Chocolate Republic Index


Doug's Republic chocolate


 

Copyright © 2009-2017. All Rights Reserved.

  



 
The Harry Dandruff Universe

  Madecasse has dark chocolate 70% made in Madagascar by Cinagra. Do you like dark Madagascan chocolate with 70% cocoa solids? The chocolate republic does