Tag Archives: milk chocolate

melk karamell zeezout

tony’s chocolonely

A friend gave me this chocolate which she saw at Goldhahn und Sampson, a gourmet shop in Berlin that sells food, wine, cookbooks and kitchen utensils. Tony’s Chocolonely is a dutch fair trade chocolate maker based in Amsterdam. They strive to sell 100% slave-free chocolate and have set up long-term relationships with cocoa farmers in Ghana and the Ivory Coast.

What I haven’t quite understood is why they call it a “Belgian chocolate” when they are dutch chocolate makers, who work with African farmers.

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This is a pretty big milk chocolate bar with caramel and sea salt. The bar is very thick but it’s easy to break along the ridges. The small caramel pieces slightly disturb the melt and the size of the chocolate somehow forces you to rather eat than melt the chocolate in your mouth. The pieces of caramel are crunchy, the chocolate is sweet with vanilla and honey notes and it has a nice amount of salt. It’s a sweet guilty pleasure, surely one of the better caramel sea salt chocolates I’ve tasted.

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Belgische melkchocolade. Ingrediënten: suiker, volle melkpoeder, cacaoboter, cacaomassa, stukjes karamel (10%), zeezout (0,5%), sojalecithine (gegarandeerd gentech vrij). Cacaobestanddelen: ten minste 32%. 180g

Ingredients: sugar, whole milk powder, cocoa butter, cocoa mass, caramel pieces (10%), sea salt (0,5%), soy lecithin (guaranteed GM-free). Cocoa solids: 32% min. 6,3 oz

My friend bought it at Goldhahn und Sampson in Berlin. I don’t know what it cost there, it is priced at €2,63 at Tony’s online store.

Images by Axel Lambrette

sambirano valley 50% with fleur de sel

benoît nihant

Benoît Nihant is a Belgian bean to bar producer, who is a trained engineer and used to work as project manager for multinational companies. Around the age of 30 he changed gears and entered the world of chocolate. On his website he states that he hunts down fine cocoa beans, which he buys at a fair and just price directly from the plantations.

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This bar is made from trinitario cocoa from the Somia plantation in Madagascar and has been stone ground and conched for 70 hours.  The bar is quite delicate and smells slightly of caramel. The melt is grainy, which is common for a stone ground chocolate. It isn’t too sweet, has a slight acidity, and it is not salty and smooth enough for my taste. The chocolate is not too bad, but not quite my taste.

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Ingredients: Organic cocoa beans, organic cane sugar, whole milk powder, cocoa butter, sea salt from Guérande. 1,76 oz

Zutaten: Kakaobohnen, Rohrzucker, Voll Milchpulver, Kakaobutter, Zeesaltz. (sic!) [Biologischer Anbau] 50g

This is available at various online shops. I bought it from the Berliner Kaffeerösterei – a micro-coffee roaster, online store, coffee shop, patisserie – with a good selection of chocolates in Berlin. Price approx. € 4,80.

Images by Axel Lambrette (thank you!!!)

kristálysó (crystal salt)

rózsavölgyi csokoládé

rózsavölgyi csokoládé is a hungarian bean-to-bar producer with a shop in Budapest. Their cocoa beans are sourced from two main growers: Cacao San José (the Franceschi family) in Venezuela, which also supplies Domori, and Bertil Akesson in Madagascar and they produce single origin chocolates. They have won several awards, for example a bronze award from the Academy of Chocolate for their “Olives and Bread 77%” chocolate in 2013.

I bought this salted bar in Berlin, but when a friend of mine travelled to Budapest I asked him to bring a few more of their bars, because I was also intrigued by the “Olives and Bread” bar. Unfortunately the shop was closed due to the summer shutdown of the factory. As the bar was already a few days over its best-by-date, I had to take the pictures myself in a hurry, so please excuse the poor quality…

rosz

This bar is a milk chocolate with 40% cocoa solids and salt. The bars are packaged really beautifully and the chocolate itself has a lovely pattern.

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The chocolate melts nicely and has a slightly malty note. It is not very salty, but since it is already past its best-by-date I’m not sure if it has already lost some of its flavour. I would like to give a fresh batch another try, I think this chocolate could be quite interesting.

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Ingredients: sugar, cocoa mass, milk powder, cocoa butter, lecithin of soya, vanilla, salt
cocoa content min. 39%, 2.5 oz

Zutaten: Zucker, Kakaomasse, Milchpulver, Kakaobutter, Sojalecithin, Vanille, Salz, 39% mind. Bio Kakaomasse, 70g

The chocolates are available online at Rózsavölgyi, I bought it in Berlin from Chocolaterie Estrellas. Price approx. 4€.

sea salt organic milk chocolate artisan bar

rococo

Rococo is a british chocolate company founded by Chantal Coady with shops in London and in Chester. She was awarded Chocolatier Of The Year 2012 and her bars, pralines, caramels and truffles, as well as her packaging, have won awards. Rococo owns a cocoa farm (part of the Grenada Chocolate Company) which provides the organic Trinitario cocoa beans for her chocolates.

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This bar was the Winner of the Academy of Chocolate Gold Award 2011.

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This is another one of my favourite salty milk chocolates, even though the saltiness here is also more restrained than what I usually prefer. Rococo adds Halen Môn Anglesey sea salt to this chocolate – a salt made from seawater taken only from around Anglesey. The chocolate has a long, smooth melt without any grittiness or discernible salt grains. It has a hint of malt and vanilla, and the amount of salt is not overpowering. It is a great salted chocolate bar, not too salty, not too sweet, perfect for those who prefer only a hint of salt.

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Ingredients: organic cane sugar, organic cocoa butter, organic whole milk powder, organic cocoa mass, Halen Môn Anglesey sea salt, emulsifier: soya lecithin, organic vanilla beans. Contains 37% min organic cocoa solids, 18% min organic milk solids.

Zutaten: Bio Rohrzucker, Bio Kakaobutter, Bio Vollmilchpulver, Bio Kakaomasse, Halen Môn Anglesey Meersalz, Emulgator: Sojalecithin. 37% mind. Bio Kakaomasse, 18% mind. Bio Milchpulver.

This bar is available at Rococo and various other online stores. I bought it online from xocoatl, a shop in Wiesbaden. Price approx. €5,90.

Images by Axel Lambrette

d-fusion lattesal

domori

This bar won Silver at the Academy of Chocolate in 2009. Domori is a company based in None, Italy and is devoted to fighting the destruction of premium varieties of cocoa and the rainforest. On their plantation in Venezuela, they grow Criollo beans, which are generally believed to be the highest quality of cocoa beans. Domori was awarded the Palme d’Or at the 2011 Salon du Chocolat in Bologna and is the only Italian company to have won the Best Chocolate Award in the single-origin dark chocolate category every year since 2003.

domori

This is one of my favourite bars, even though it is not quite as salty as I would like it to be. The chocolate bar is flat, has a good snap and melts incredibly smoothly. It is supposed to have a hint of banana and citrus fruits, but I experienced rather a milky caramel with just hints of salt. I would say that this is one of the milk chocolates that immediately makes you understand the difference between a regular Milka or Cadbury bar and a high quality chocolate bar.

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Ingredienti: Zucchero di canna, burro di cacao, latte intero in polvere, pasta di cacao, sale di Guérande (0,4%). Emulsionante: lecitina di soia. Cacao min. 45%.

Ingredients: Cane sugar, cocoa butter, whole powdered milk, cocoa mass, Guérande salt (0,4%). Emulsifier: soy lecithin. 45% min. cocoa

Zutaten: Rohrzucker, Kakaobutter, Vollmilchpulver, Kakaopaste, Guérande Salz (0,4%), Emulgator: Sojalecithin. Kakao mind. 45%

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This bar is available at various online stores. I bought it in Berlin at Winterfeldt-Schokoladen, a shop in Schöneberg. They also have an online shop. Price approx. €3,50 (25g) to €5,90 (50g).

Images by Axel Lambrette

fleur de sel

GEPA

GEPA is an alternative fair trade organisation based in Wuppertal, Germany. Their chocolates are made without emulsifiers, conched for up to 48 hours, cocoa butter is the only added fat and their wrapping is aluminium free. For their milk chocolate they use organic milk provided by a milk cooperative.

gepa

The bar smells slightly like coffee with milk. It melts nicely and it is sweet, but not overpoweringly so. The salt grains are not evenly distributed, some pieces of chocolate have a burst of salt where you can feel the coarse salt grains, other pieces are just plain milk chocolate. The chocolate itself has a hint of vanilla and a bit of acidity at the end. Although it’s a decent chocolate, it might not make it quite to my top ten list, because it is not salty enough for me. This could be the right milk chocolate for someone who is trying a salted chocolate for the first time and doesn’t want to be overpowered.

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Zutaten: Rohrohrzucker, Vollmilchpulver (25 %), Kakaobutter, Kakaomasse, Pyramidensalz 0,5 % (Fleur de Sel), Vanille-Extrakt, Kakao: 37% mind. [Fair-Handelsanteil der Zutaten insgesamt: 99,5%; aus kontrolliert ökologischem Anbau]

Ingredients: Raw cane sugar, whole milk powder (25%), cocoa butter, cocoa mass, fleur de sel 0,5%, vanilla extract, cocoa min. 37% [fair trade ingredients 99%, organic]

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This bar is available in many grocery stores in Germany as well as online. I bought it in the grocery section of a department store in Berlin. Price approx. €2,30.

Images by Axel Lambrette

potato chip bar

chuao chocolatier

A few weeks ago I ordered quite a few chocolates from The Meadow in New York and this bar wasn’t on my “salt” radar – I chose it last minute as substitution for a bar that was out of stock. Now that I’ve looked at chuao chocolatier’s range of chocolate bars, there’s quite a few I would like to try, but short of visiting the US, I don’t think I’ll get a chance soon – they only ship within the 48 contiguous states.

chuao

chuao chocolatier is a Venezuelan chocolatier based in California run by Master Chef Michael Antonorsi and his brother Richard. They operate two chocolate cafes in San Diego and their chocolates can be bought at various retailers. They named the company after the cacao-producing region of Chuao in Venezuela. The create what they call “fusion chocolate” by creating unusual flavours. Their website unfortunately does not explicitly explain where their cocoa is sourced, but maybe one can assume it’s from Venezuela.

This bar did not travel well and arrived in pieces. It’s a milk chocolate with kettle cooked potato chips and a hint of sea salt. When I opened the wrapping there was discernible smell of potato chips and sweet, slightly woodsy chocolate. The melt is tough to assess, the small potato chip pieces are grainy and you quickly want to just eat the chocolate. The chocolate itself leans to a darker side of milk chocolate and would probably not be one of my favourites. But I really like the crunchy aspect of this bar, even though it could use a little bit more salt. I would eat it again – it’s a somewhat guilty pleasure chocolate. And I would still like to try chuao chocolatier’s other salty bars.

Ingredients: Premium milk chocolate (41% cacao, cacao butter, sugar, dehydrated milk, soy lecithin [as an emulsifier], natural vanilla), potatoes, vegetable oil (sunflower, corn and/or canola oil), sea salt.

Zutaten: Premium Milch Schokolade (41% Kakao, Kakaobutter, Zucker, Milchpulver, Soyalecithtin [als Emulgator], Vanille), Kartoffeln, Pflanzenöl (Sonnenblumenöl, Maiskeimöl und/oder Rapsöl), Meersalz.

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As far as I know this bar is not available outside of the US. I bought it online from the meadow in New York. Price approx. $ 5,95.

Images by Axel Lambrette