Saturday, December 4, 2010
My local Eden Gourmet recently began selling NibMor chocolates, so I picked one up when I was home for Thanksgiving break. The name is kind of misleading -- there are no nibs (bits of roasted cocoa bean) in this chocolate. There may never have been nibs in the processing of this chocolate, because I don't think the cocoa beans were ever roasted. And that, readers, was a huge mistake on NibMor's part. Because this bar was nasty.
Cocoa content: 65%
Notable ingredients: crispy brown rice; agave nectar
NibMor is a couple of women in Huntington, on Long Island, making nasty chocolate bars and leaving out all the good ingredients that make chocolate palatable. Vegan. Dairy Free. Gluten Free. Non-GMO. No Refined Sugar. Kosher. Recyclable. I don't even know how a chocolate bar can be recyclable. Was I not supposed to eat it? Anyway, I'm going to make a list of things I hate about this bar.
1. Raw: The package has all sorts of labels and certifications on it. It's Raw (of course,) it's Certified Vegan, it's USDA Organic. Here's what I don't get -- vegans, ok, I understand that they have to eat chocolate too. Some of their chocolate is ok. Most of it isn't -- whatever! They're doing the best they can! But Raw foodists? Isn't the Raw food movement primarily concerned with maintaining the natural nutrients and antioxidants in food? I know what they say about a little chocolate every day being good for your heart or something, but let's be honest -- chocolate is an indulgence! There are no important nutrients to maintain here, really. Is it worth ruining what could have been a perfectly good chocolate bar just to save some antioxidants?
2. Agave Nectar: Agave is what vegans use instead of honey, because honey comes from bees. Agave is nice to drizzle on yogurt. But last time I checked, sugar is ok for vegans. Sugar actually comes from a plant! And it's the only sweetener that really works with chocolate for consistency reasons. So why couldn't NibMor use sugar? Of course they're concerned with refined ingredients, but plenty of chocolate is made with unrefined cane sugar. Is this flashy, unnecessary nod to veganism worth the gummy, crumbly consistency?
3. Consistency: Combine raw chocolate and agave nectar, and you've achieved the consistency of a Power Bar. NibMor doesn't break along even lines, it has no snap to speak of, and eating it involves a lot of chewing and no melting. Creaminess is sacrificed for cold processing. This was a sticky, lifeless mess.
4. Brown Rice: This is just ridiculous. If you're staying away from refined grains -- if you're staying away from refined anything -- just forget about chocolate. Everything that is good about chocolate is going to offend your diet.
That's that. Next week I will enjoy a chocolate bar rife with refined sugar and literally filled with dairy. This bar gets a D.