I'm testing chocolate again. TCHO has sent a test batch of their Fruity chocolate, fruity not because it's been injected with artificial orange or lime but because of the natural characteristics of the beans they use to make it.
The website says, "Making chocolate is hard work, but we enjoy (almost) every minute of it, no matter how twisted the journey from pod to palate." The twisted journey for this bean took them to Peru where they met with fair trade and organic cacao bean growers and brought back the perfect bean to make this chocolate something incredible.
I feel a little cheated because I wasn't able to test it by biting into an actual bar of chocolate—I think the texture of chocolate is nearly as important as the taste. Instead, I received four small packages of "panned goods," what the industry calls treats drenched in chocolate. But if ever there was someone who was able to chew the chocolate off a macadamia nut... It's a bit like eating the cream from half an Oreo. TCHO sweetened their Fruity chocolate just a little so it wouldn't overpower what it was drenching, but I suspect the pure stuff would be just as wonderful.
I sampled drenched mango pieces, drenched cashews, drenched nibs, and drenched macadamias. I'm not wild about chocolate-covered fruit, so these would have to be my least favorite of the batch. Eustacia loved them, though.
I remember liking the citrus variety, but the fruity stuff seems to have an after taste that is more potent, something that tells you you have eaten something earthy delicious and something that makes you wish you had more than a few small pouches to sample. Yum.