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Home / Doug's Chocolate Republic  /   Review:  Salazon Sea Salt & Caramel

     
Salazon Sea Salt & Caramel 
Posted: 25 September 2014    8.0 
Salazon Sea Salt & Caramel from USA With this kind of package -- organic ingredients, hand added sea salt, luscious caramel, small batch made bars, rare Dominican Republic single-sourced beans -- the only way Salazon's Sea Salt & Caramel bar could have tanked is if founder Pete Truby were drunk and urinating into the chocolate as it was being produced.   A few years ago, when I thought of Maryland, I imaged scenes of drug pushers and hard boiled cops in Baltimore on The Wire. Now I'll think of drug pushers and cops and Salazon's salted chocolates.  
Avg price/gram: USD 0.042   Cocoa %: 57  Size: 85g   
       


OptoJay, the bearer of my latest stash of American-made chocolate bars, is long gone from Thailand's shores.  He probably doesn't even remember he was ever here.  But his memory lives on -- in my mouth when I pop in a morsel of one of his high quality chocolate gifts.        

Maryland operator Salazon is a real inspiration.  I've come across a lot of inspirational chocolate founder stories here at the Chocolate Republic, but Salazon sets the bar. You bet that pun was intended!  Pete Truby founded the company solo in 2009.  Two years later, he was still the sole employee.  In 2012, he started rolling out the bars nationally. I doubt anyone outside the US, unless they have a benefactor like OptoJay, has tried a Salazon.         

Named for the Spanish word for 'salted,' Salazon's core competency is a simple one: manufacture salted dark chocolate bars.  Truby came up with the idea to go the salt lick route during a backpacking trip to Utah in 2009. Their little catchphrase is plastered everywhere.  "The Original Salted Chocolate Brand."   While there were plenty of salted dark chocolate bars around before 2009, no chocolate company built its business around it.  Or does it quite like Truby does it at Salazon.  Salazon doesn't just add sea salt to the recipe during the chocolate mixing process.  No way, Jose!   Salazon sprinkles the chocolate on the bar's underside at the very end, so that the salt has a very distinctive and bold flavor.  Truby wants to the salt to counteract the sweetness of the sugar and the bitterness of the 57% and 75% cacao he uses.   He calls this "innovation" flavor layering,        

Salazon is a bean-to-bar manufacturer and every single one of the ingredients is organic.  They're not above using emulsifiers, but hell, those are organic, too.  The bar's wrapper promises that at least 1% of Salazon's gross proceeds go towards conservation efforts.  About the only other thing that could sway you by now to try Salazon is to find out Pete Truby was a former boy scout and loves helping out in old-age homes!      

Truby's noble mission for Salazon wouldn't mean anything more than a U.S. President's empty campaign promises if the chocolate didn't taste that great. Salazon's Hispaniola cacao beans are sourced from a single origin in the Dominican Republic and have a distinct flavor all their own.  I couldn't swear on anyone's grave that I'd tried Hispaniola beans before sampling this Sea Salt & Caramel bar.            

With this kind of package -- organic ingredients, hand added sea salt, luscious caramel, small batch made bars, rare Dominican Republic single-sourced beans -- the only way Salazon's Sea Salt & Caramel bar could have tanked is if Truby were drunk and urinating into the chocolate as it was being produced.  Truby here is like a Japanese sushi chef.  He sources the best ingredients and gets out of his own way by preparing the final product simply with a unique touch to differentiate his brand from all the other chocolate products in the market.        

A few years ago, when I thought of Maryland, I imaged scenes of drug pushers and hard boiled cops in Baltimore on The Wire.  Now I'll think of drug pushers and cops and Salazon's salted chocolates.              

If you liked reading this, consider savoring these reviews:
 Whittakers Coconut from New Zealand -- 33% cocoa solids
 Babaevsky Dark Hazelnut Raisin from Russian Federation -- 55% cocoa solids
 The Complete Chocolate Republic Index


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