Saturday, September 7, 2013

Review: SOMA Arcana 100%

Richard's Rating: 7.5
chocolate makerSOMA
barArcana 100%
regionDominican Republic, Haiti, Hawaii, Madagascar
cacao trees(unknown)
size45g ~ 1.6oz
cocoa solids100%
added fat(none)
other ingredients(none)
list priceCA$5.50
colormedium-dark brown
PANTONE 19-1015
texturesmooth, image imprint, bubbles, adhered bits
aromaroast (cocoa, tobacco), dairy, earth (grass), fruit
tasteroast (cocoa), fruit (melon), earth, hint of sour
meltmore smooth
finishsomewhat tannin
Canadian bean to bar chocolate maker SOMA makes several artisan chocolate bars and many chocolate products. Based in Toronto, they have two retail stores and accept orders via email, but do not yet have an online store.

Arcana 100% was made from only cacao beans. The pre-printed text indicated it was made with three types of cacao, but there were four different origin listed on the label: Dominican Republic, Madagascar, Haiti, and Hawaii. The chocolate reviewed here was from batch A24, and there was no production or best before date.

The 45 gram bar came sealed inside a silver plastic wrapper. It was unscored with a deep-set image imprint of cacao pods, using the same mold that Stirs the Soul uses with their Origins line.

The color of Arcana 100% was a medium-dark brown Bracken (PANTONE 19-1015). The bar had several bubbles and adhered bits of chocolate, but otherwise had a smooth surface.

Opening the package revealed a rich roast aroma, mostly cocoa with some tobacco. Other scents in the aroma included dairy, a grassy earth, and some fruit. The bar had a hard snap.

The taste contained flavors of roast, fruit, and earth. The roast was mostly that rich cocoa, and the only fruit flavor I identified more specifically was melon. There was a hint of sourness as well.

The melt was more smooth, almost creamy, and yet also slightly excessive (perhaps the particle size was too small?). The chocolate flavor lasted 30 to 40 seconds after the chocolate was gone, giving a medium length. The finish was somewhat tannin.

With the seeming random blend of origins, I suspected that Arcana 100% might be made from leftover beans, and that less care might be used in crafting this chocolate. If that was the case, however, the result was impressive. This 100% chocolate was superior to most of its competitors.

You can purchase SOMA Arcana 100% online for $9.50 from Chocolopolis.

1 comment:

  1. I'm glad to hear you enjoyed the Arcana. It has consistently been one of my favorite 100% bars.