Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate Commendation Bar

I found this enormous bar at Trader Joe’s before Christmas, and I knew I wanted to take it to work for a chocolate eating meeting.

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I don’t know why this is called a Commendation bar, since the back of that label only explained the history of chocolate and how this bar was made.

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But did you see the size of this bar? Almost four and a half pounds! And it was 32 servings, each one 330 calories and over 2 ounces! Here is a picture of the bar along with several of the chocolate eating meeting people.

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I included several game developers for scale, but then I realized that people might not know the average size of a game developer, so I included a banana for scale to them.

And you know what? This chocolate was pretty good! Much better and richer than I thought it would be and not as sweet as 61% cacao led me to expect. We all hacked off chunks and gnawed at them, but there was still so much left over that we will probably gnaw at it again at another meeting. I might take some home to bake with, and I will probably still have left overs!

Neuhaus Intense Dark West Africa 52%

My friend Tiffany gave me this bar, which her sister-in-law Cindy picked up in Belgium.

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Yum! This bar was very nice and rich. Being 52% cacao, it was quite sweet, but the chocolate flavor was still quite pronounced. There were no single origin notes, but I suspect this bar was a mix of chocolates from various sources and not from a particular country. Still, it was quite good.

Thanks Tiffany and Cindy!

HT Traders Extra Dark Nibs

This was the next HT Traders bar I tried.

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This bar was very good. The chocolate was smooth and very rich, and the crushed nibs made it taste much darker than 70% cacao. And unlike the 80% cacao HT Traders bar, this one made it to the office for an eating meeting, and my co-workers loved it, too. I wish we had a Harris Teeter grocery store nearby, because these bars would enter my regular rotation.

Trader Joe’s Mini 70% Cacao Dark Chocolate Bars

I found these bars at Trader Joe’s a few weeks ago.

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These were very good! They looked and tasted much darker than 70% cacao. I would have guessed 80% to 85% easily, plus they had a singular note (something sour and vaguely fruit-like) that made me think they were single origin, but nothing on the box indicated this. My co-workers loved them, and seconds and thirds were eaten.

Chocolove Extreme Dark 88%

My co-worker Chris J. brought in this Chocolove bar for us to try at a chocolate eating meeting.

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This bar was AMAZING! So dark and rich, it is my favorite Chocolove to date. I ate three or four pieces, it was that good! I liked it much better than their coffee bar, and like that bar, there was a poem inside!

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My co-worker Cathy N., as the last one to the chocolate eating meeting, won the honor of reading this poem aloud to her co-workers. It was very sweet…but not as sweet as the chocolate!

Thanks Chris!

Trader Joe’s Dark & White Chocolates

I found this package of tulip chocolates at Trader Joe’s.

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Yes, there was white chocolate, but there was more dark chocolate, and these were Belgian chocolates, so I had to have them.

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Look how pretty they are! There were ten of them, and I knew about a dozen people come to the chocolate eating meeting, so I braced myself and sent the instant message to our Slack-based chocolate group.

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Meanwhile, I looked at the chocolate close up. So cute!

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I picked one up so you could see the size. It was mostly a dark chocolate base, with a tulip drawn on top with white chocolate. Not a bad ratio.

My co-workers arrived, and with two of them on vacation, we had exactly the amount of chocolate tulips we needed. I thought my tulip tasted good, with a nice dark chocolate flavor, diminished a bit by the white chocolate. My guess would be the dark was 50-60% cacao. All in all, I wouldn’t get these again, but they were fun to try.