Wednesday, March 15, 2006

over-the-top chocolate reviews

You know those snooty wine reviews that surround the wine with flowerly language, "kissed with a touch of motor oil, hiding undercurrents of roasted pork rinds, etc..." Well, chocolate is the new wine, and it's a lot cheaper. I buy chocolate (and other things) at a gourmet store (Garden of Eden, 14th and 5th, for locals) fairly regularly, and they'd been out of my favorite bar for a couple of months, but now have it back. Yay. It's really, really good, at the bargain price of $5.95 for 3.5 ounces. Michel Cluizel's 1er Cru de Plantation, Los Anconès.

And let me now entertain you with a review of this bar from, home of particularly fantastic snooty chocolate reviews:
The aroma is simply sensational and hypnotizes you with a magnetic hold. It’s mildly acidic and full on the nose, bombarding you with an astonishing array of scents. It bears an upfront green likeness - approaching grass - with strong tobacco head notes, herbal accents of licorice, and hints of olives hiding beneath. The appearance is just as luxurious and complex, with red and orange tints mixing with the natural dark tan to form a color of unparalleled allure.

Immediately, a lovely chocolaty presence captivates you, totally enveloping the taste buds with a mesmerizing pull. It’s eventually accompanied by a green flavor similar to olives, along with a concurrent emergence of mild acidity. The olives are subtle at first but increase steadily, and then gently fade as the chocolate turns to berries and cherries, a red and fairly tart flavor. Here, we also see a very faint cherry cordial-like flavor, one that pairs rather well with the splashes of rum that manage to sneak in as well. Approaching the end of the length, the red fruits evolve into apricots, and then almonds and hazelnuts finish everything off and last long into the satisfying, albeit short, finish. The texture is typical Cluizel: slightly creamy and slightly thick, thereby creating a fuller body in the mouth, which when combined with the strikingly long length and strong chocolaty presence result in a very satisfying experience overall.

Unarguably one of Cluizel's pinnacle achievements, Los Ancones is a well-balanced chocolate, with optimum flavor yield and minimum bitterness. One can tell that the bitterness is present, but it’s kept in check remarkably well. Also the acidity is treated similarly and never emerges to the foreground to dominate. Excellent job here. Los Ancones is remarkably satisfying, as the underlying chocolaty strength and complexity persistently endure without any signs of weakening whatsoever. It’s a strong chocolate, slightly acidic, and slightly bitter, never alleviating or straining at any given moment, ultimately delivering multiple sensations and constant flavor evolution persistently. A stellar performance in every respect, Los Ancones will leave you spellbound.

Hans-Peter Rot
Enjoy that? I did too.



At 2:52 PM, Blogger jay_morris said...

This is great stuff!

Hey, have you ever seen Posh Nosh?

It's a BBC show making fun of the language of cooking shows. I think you'd appreciate it.

At 7:29 PM, Blogger Mona said...

my goodness!!

olives in chocolate? i've never heard of such a thing...



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