Lindy's Rating: 10.0 (previously ****)
Richard's Rating: 9.5 (previously ***)
As with the other Chuao bars we've reviewed, the Bonnat Chuao had the same PANTONE 19-1015 Bracken coloration, perhaps with a hint of Mustang (PANTONE 19-1217). It was a slightly darker brown (as with the Amano, and in contrast with the medium brown of the Amedei or Coppeneur).
The aroma of this bar was quite complex, with a predominantly earthy scent of soil and mustiness. I also smelled something roasted, but couldn't identify anything more specific. We also found hints of many other aromas: sweet, allspice, molasses, and berry.
This chocolate had an initial roast flavor, that was clearly smoky to me, but Lindy experienced it simply as roast. The melt was less smooth, again similar to the Amano and nothing like the lovely creaminess of the Amedei or Coppeneur Chuaos. As the chocolate melted, two berry flavors were revealed: blueberry and strawberry.
A short delay after the chocolate disappeared, we were left with a faintly fruity flavor. This fruity finish was remarkable in that it was so unlike the mild bitterness, acidity, or dryness typical of nearly all dark chocolates.
Bonnat Chuao is the fourth chocolate bar we've reviewed made exclusively from cacao from the Chuao region of Venezuela. We were happily surprised as it exceeded our expectations and was second only to Amedei's spectacular bar. It's also the most affordable Chuao chocolate, at only $2.83 per ounce. Lindy rated it 4 stars and placed it 4th among her ten favorite bars so far. I placed it 3rd among mine.
There isn't a list price for Bonnat Chuao, but you can find it at Chocolopolis for $9.99.
UPDATE 20 November 2012: As of today, the price at Chocolopolis has risen to $21.75. The lowest price I found today for purchasing Bonnat Chuao online is $15.90 at Chocosphere.