Luxury Chocolate Review
After visiting the Lunch trade show this year I came across a number of very interesting food producers on the market. I already wrote about Superfoods great cereal on the go pots, this time I would love to tell you all about a delicious chocolate called Willie’s Cocoa made from bean to bar in Devon.
Willie Harcourt-Cooze has travelled many hundreds of miles in his quest to make the most delicious perfect chocolate, hunting for the most flavoursome beans. Willie’s Cacao plant farm in Venezuela is impressive indeed. Not only is the plantation made up of world famous Chuao cocoa plants which are all grown free from pesticides, chemicals and fertilizers irrigated from water that runs down from the cloud forest-topped mountains, his farm claims to hold 3% of the world’s flora and 7% of the world’s bird species!
Willie has built his chocolate factory in Devon using old fashioned machinery which are smaller and slower than the modern versions, but Willie believes they make better tasting chocolate.
I am delighted to review a range of Willie’s Cacao chocolates, here are my thoughts.
Seaflakes Rio Caribe 44. Milk chocolate with sea salt; a current popular trend in chocolate flavour combinations on the market at the moment. Willie’s Seaflakes version did not disappoint. Dreamy creamy milk chocolate light and subtle, followed by a real hit of the sea in the aftertaste. This chocolate had the most striking flavour of all the varieties I tried and almost certainly the best sea salt chocolate I have had the pleasure of eating.
Luscious Orange Cuban Baracoa 65. Delicate dark orange chocolate with honey notes. Once again a gorgeous smooth dark chocolate that is not bitter at all. Tastes deliciously rich with a subtle orange flavour blended through. Sometimes I find orange chocolates can be too strong and overpowering, but this was just the right amount of orange smoothly blended. I loved this variety as a flavoured dark chocolate.
Venezuela Gold Rio Caribe 72. Dark chocolate described with complex notes of coffee and nuts. I found the chocolate to be a deliciously rich dark chocolate, not bitter at all as some darks can be, but unfortunately couldn’t really detect the coffee and nuts. I’d like those flavours to be a little more prominent, but perhaps my pallet is not as refined as some connoisseurs may be.
Indonesia Gold Javan Dark 69. Rich smooth dark chocolate with soft caramel notes. Melting the chocolate in my mouth I searched for the caramel notes and in the after taste I could just detect the it but if I didn’t know it was there I probably would have missed it. The dark chocolate in itself though is decadent and delicious with a very round smooth taste in the mouth.
Sea Salt Caramel Black Pearls Dark Chocolate. Presented in a lovely black and red trim presentation box for sharing, or not as the case may be. It has a perforated cut out on top under the lid. The gorgeous thin crisp shells of luscious dark chocolate burst in the mouth with an explosion of liquid chocolate slightly salted and soft sweet caramel is a gastronomic delight, all individually wrapped in shiny gold wrappers. It’s worth savouring in the mouth a few seconds to enjoy the trio of flavours working together. One of my favourites.
Wonders of the World Trio Collection Box.
Dark Chocolate: Madagascan Gold Sambirano 71 with notes of summer fruits. Again gorgeous rich dark chocolate with the berry flavour barely there. There is just a very slight fruity edge notable if you are looking out for it.
White Chocolate: El Blanco. Often I find white chocolate too sweet and sickly but this was not at all. Very light and milky the best white chocolate I have ever tasted. The colour is an off white, perhaps indicative of lower sugar levels, and very addictive. I kept going back for more!
Milk Chocolate: Milk of the Gods, Rio Caribe 44. A sublime single estate milk chocolate, the simplest of the chocolates I have tried from Willies Cacao collection. Still a very nice light chocolate, not sugary sweet like many commercial milk chocolates on the market are.
On the whole I would highly recommend Willie’s Cacao chocolates. If you think you don’t like dark chocolate you should try some of Willie’s Cacao, you are likely to have your mind changed. There is never any bitter taste in the dark varieties, while the milk and white chocolates never too sweet. This is a true reflection in the quality of beans that are being used.
To buy any of Willie’s Cacao head over to their website now. If you have tried Willie’s Cacao I’d love to hear which varieties and what you thought.