Monday, December 19, 2011

Review: Mindo 77%

Lindy's Rating: 6.5
Richard's Rating: 6.0
chocolate makerMindo
cacao trees(unknown)
size100g ~ 3.5oz
cocoa solids77%
added fatcocoa butter
sweetenercane juice
other ingredients(none)
list price$7.25
colormedium-dark brown
PANTONE 19-1015
texturesmooth with scoring, bubbles
aromaroast, fruit (cherry), earth, floral
snapmedium hard
tasteroast (coffee), tannin, woody, fruit, nut, hint of sweet
meltmore smooth
Mindo is one of those very rare chocolate makers that starts with wet cacao and does their own fermenting and drying. Most bean to bar chocolate makers buy already dried cacao beans and at best have some indirect input on the fermenting and drying processes. Barbara Wilson and Joe Meza have developed a personal relationship with a small cooperative of cacao farmers in Ecuador, from whom they directly purchase their cacao.

The 77% bar was made with organic cacao beans, certified organic evaporated cane juice, and a small amount of added cocoa butter from the same cacao beans. This chocolate, however, was not yet certified organic. The big 100 gram bar was scored into 24 pieces and came wrapped in gold-sided wax paper inside a white paper sleeve. There was no date on the bar we reviewed.

The color of 77% was a medium-dark brown close to Bracken (PANTONE 19-1015). The top surface had a smooth flat finish, with some scuffing and bubbles in the corners of some pieces. The snap was medium-hard.

This chocolate had a somewhat muted aroma, with a fruit scent that Lindy identified as cherry, some roast, and the floral typical of Ecuador origins. I also smelled some earthiness, and Lindy noticed something she described as dusty.

77% tasted of a coffee roast, with strong tannin, and revealed flavors of wood and fruit. We also both experienced a hint of sweetness, and I tasted an additional nut flavor.

The melt was smoother than average. The chocolate flavor lasted about 20 seconds after the chocolate was gone, just barely breaking into a medium length. The aftertaste was tannin.

Mindo 77% was a finalist at the 2010 Good Food Awards. You can purchase this chocolate online for $7.25 directly from Mindo.

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