Thursday, December 29, 2011

Review: TCHO Nutty 2.0

Lindy's Rating: 6.5
Richard's Rating: 6.0
chocolate makerTCHO
barNutty 2.0
cacao trees(unknown)
size58g ~ 2.0oz
cocoa solids65%
added fatcocoa butter
sweetenercane sugar
emulsifiersoy lecithin
other ingredients(none)
list price$5.48
colormedium brown
PANTONE 19-1015
texturesmooth, scoring, curving lines
aromaroast (smoke, malt), earth, fruit (berry)
tasteroast (coffee), sweet, fruit (coconut), nut
finishsomewhat sweet
San Francisco bean to bar chocolate maker TCHO prides themselves on innovation and leveraging technology to make their chocolate better, and works closely with their cacao farmers to improve fermentation and drying practices. Their dark chocolate bars are all single origin, yet TCHO is focused on making chocolate with specific flavors rather than from specific origins. Nutty 2.0 is a major revision of this chocolate. The original Nutty was made with cacao from Peru. Nutty 2.0 was made with cacao from Ecuador.

The chocolate was made from cacao beans, cane sugar, cocoa butter, soy lecithin, and vanilla beans. It contained 65% cocoa solids, and was certified organic and fair trade. The two ounce bar was scored in 9 pieces and came wrapped in gold-sided wax paper and packaged inside a paper box. There was no production or best before date for the bar we reviewed, but the box did have a sticker with the number 2691.

Nutty 2.0 had a medium brown Bracken (PANTONE 19-1015) color and a generally smooth surface that was imprinted with TCHO's intricate wavy lines. There was just a trivial bit of surface scuffing. The bottom surface revealed an apparently typical pattern from filling the mold and some indentations. The bar had a hard snap.

The aroma of Nutty 2.0 was a strong smoky roast with malt, and also had scents of earth and a berry fruit. Lindy remarked on her surprise at the lack of any of the typical floral scent of an Ecuador chocolate.

The roast, while present in the taste, lacked the smoke and malt of the aroma. Instead, it tasted more like a coffee roast to me. Nutty 2.0 was quite sweet, and had fruit in the form of coconut and some nut. It didn't taste as nutty as I expected, certainly nothing like the wonderful nutty flavor of Valrhona Gran Couva.

Nutty 2.0 had a smooth melt. The chocolate flavor lasted 20 to 25 seconds after the chocolate was gone, giving it a medium length. The finish was somewhat sweet without any of the bitterness sweetness is often used to hide.

Overall, we both concluded this was a good chocolate, but we found it too sweet and the flavor didn't live up to its nutty name.

You can purchase TCHO Nutty 2.0 online directly from TCHO for $10.95 for two bars.

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