Equal Exchange 71% Very Dark Chocolate

My co-worker Dini M. found a new Equal Exchange bar that we had not tried before!

Like other Equal Exchange bars, this one had loads of information on the inside of its label. Included was the fact this bar had cacao from Peru, Ecuador, Panama and the Dominican Republic.

How was the chocolate itself? Delicious! It was very dark, darker than I expected for 71% cacao, and very creamy, in a way that usually only Lindt can manage with dark chocolate. The chocolate flavor was very rich and pronounced, and while there was no single origin note, there was a strong cocoa flavor. Everyone loved it and had seconds.

Thanks Dini!

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Zazubean Buff’d 90% Cacao Strong Chocolate With Coconut Sugar

My co-worker Dini M. brought in this unusual bar to work.

This bar was unusual in a couple ways. First, it used beans from just three countries: Ecuador, Panama and the Dominican Republic. Which makes it triple origin, instead of the more common single origin. And second, it used coconut sugar instead of regular beet sugar. And it tasted very smooth, if that is what coconut sugar does. It was also as deep and dark as you would expect from a 90% cacao bar. I loved it, and so did my co-workers.

Thanks Dini!

Equal Exchange Panama 80% Dark Chocolate

I found this bar at Whole Foods in the Tustin District.

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I had had this bar six years ago, but I included it again because it was SO good and because they changed the label, inside and out. The inside included a description of the farmer’s co-op that produced the cacao and how buy this bar supports them.

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I love doing good by chocolate. I also really love the two women on the left. There is such joy in their eyes! I bet they like chocolate too.

My co-workers LOVED this bar! One declared it the best chocolate we had eaten in a quite a while, and I agreed with him. This bar was very dark, deep and rich. I am glad I bought some more in the brand, to sample and to support the farmers. Go chocolate!

Equal Exchange chocolates

Michele brought in two chocolate bars from Equal Exchange, a cooperative that lets small farmers sell their organic produce to a wider customer base than they normally would have available. The first bar was a single origin bar from Panama.

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This bar was great! It had a very rich, deep chocolatey flavor, and it was not as bitter as I expected for an 80% cacao bar. And it turns out this was my first ever bar from Panama! It was not only single-origin chocolate, but there was even a picture of the farmer who grew the cacao for this bar on the back of the label.

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Thanks Josefine! Your cacao is fantastic.

And then there was this bar.

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I know I say frequently that I am not a fan of fruit and chocolate, but then I post a bar of fruit and chocolate and say that I like it…but I can’t do that here. The chocolate was very good in this bar, but the bar itself was super orange flavored. The orange completely overpowered the chocolate, and I was not a fan. Why take great chocolate and mask its complex flavor with fruit? I will never understand that.