I fooled you all last week -- you thought I was through with Holiday Merriment, but really I was JUST GETTING STARTED. Single origin, Indonesian beans, blah blah blah it was all a guise. Really I was just gearing up for the ultimate Christmas spice-fest that was this bar. It's Cocoa Bean Chocolate Co.'s special holiday bar -- they seem to have one every year, judging from their website. I found it at McCambridge's in Galway. Back to my old stomping grounds.
Cocoa Bean Chocolate Co.: Winter Spice Bar
Cocoa content: 28%
Notable ingredients: vanilla, cardamom, ginger, chili
Eating this bar was like walking through crisp white snow as cardamom, ginger, and a tingle of chili softly fall through the winter air -- no, I'm just kidding -- that's what it says on the back of the wrapper though. Eating this bar was more like foraging through crisp white snow for any traces of spice hidden deep below the surface. I think I tasted the chili more than anything, but only very slightly and as an aftertaste. I may have sensed a bit of cardamom on my tongue once or twice. No ginger for miles.
I'm big into cardamom. Unfortunately, I haven't reviewed any cardamom bars on this blog, but that doesn't mean I haven't known them. Vosges makes a bar -- the Calindia Bar -- with cardamom, walnuts, and dried plums. Needless to say, it's divine. So, having known that bar, I was hoping to encounter cardamom here with as much flavor and aroma as last time. I was admittedly a little disappointed -- not because the Winter Spice Bar tasted bad at all, but because I was just expecting a little more from it.
This is only the second white chocolate bar I've reviewed on this blog. I really don't eat much of it, and I think that might be why I find it hard to locate flavors in a bar of white chocolate. Every time, it just tastes so salty and buttery to me. But this white chocolate was a little less intense than the one I tried previously -- perhaps because the percentage of cocoa butter is a bit smaller here.
In any event, this bar was pretty tasty but could have been vastly better if it were made with milk chocolate and infused with more of the advertised spices. I give it a B.