Lindy's Rating: 8.0 (previously ***)
Richard's Rating: 8.0 (previously ***)
The first thing we noticed about Amano's Chuao bar is that it is a darker brown than the other Chuao bars we've reviewed. Breaking the pieces to test the snap revealed a couple of air pockets in the chocolate, indicating imperfect tempering.
This chocolate had a surprising coffee aroma, with an earthy background we decided was musty, and a hint of coconut. The taste of the Amano Chuao was an intense blackberry, some plum, and yet also just a bit earthy. The melt was less smooth, but not grainy; just not as smooth as other comparable chocolates. Sadly, the flavor didn't last long, but the finish left no bitterness -- we were left with only a slight dryness.
Overall, we were both a little disappointed by Amano's Chuao bar, having had high expectations from this respected chocolate maker using top quality beans. We both ranked this bar in our respective top 10, but it was noticeably below the other Chuaos we've tasted.