TCHO is a maker of chocolate -- exclusively dark, I've learned -- with an emphasis on single origin and fair trade products. My mother bought this bar for me at Whole Foods in Union, NJ, although most varietals of their chocolate are also sold at Starbucks locations, at least in the Northeast. Kiss of death -- am I right -- especially for a company that deems itself "obsessed," "innovative" and -- this is the worst -- "local." Local this chocolate is not, although I'm pretty sure what they mean to say is that they're the only chocolate manufacturer in San Francisco. So, sure, it's a local company, but that doesn't really mean much for the people who are buying their bars in a Starbucks in New York City. ANYWAYS:
Cocoa content: 68%
Notable ingredients: n/a
TCHO has created what they're referring to as a taxonomy of different chocolate flavors. All of the chocolate is dark, but the dark varies in terms of flavor notes, and TCHO has identified 6 recognizable taste groups. They are: Fruity (this bar); Floral; Earthy; Nutty; Chocolatey; and Citrus. The website elaborates on the flavors found in each category, and Fruity apparently tastes of cherry, raspberry, and raisin. And I actually found this to be remarkably true, although it's hard to say how much I was swayed by the "Fruity" label and the bright orange color on the box.
I do think the flavor was somewhat distinct from what Citrus might taste like: it wasn't at all sour or zesty. It was kind of sweeter than you'd expect a 68% cocoa to taste, and had a notably uplifting flavor, as opposed to those chocolates I've described as "earthy" on this blog. It tasted crisp, finished, and -- I don't know how to say this, other than "bright." I really think everyone should just go out and try this bar for themselves, because whether or not you can sense the variations in flavor it's really delicious and well-made. And it's widely available at a Starbucks near you -- or a Whole Foods. Plus, the snap was agreeable and the packaging is great.
Other flavors on the TCHO (by the way, this is pronounced "choh" and is meant to sound like the first syllable of "chocolate") taxonomy that I would want to try include Nutty and Citrus. And I'll throw in Chocolatey for good measure because that sounds right up my alley. This flavor seems like a good pick, though, so I applaud my mother and I give this bar an A.