In search of the finest chocolate, I have been to Lyon, Barcelona, Belgium, Italy and many other countries. The best chocolate is a matter of use, cacao % and preference. Clearly many are used to higher percentages of butter milk to give the chocolate a smooth and rich taste. But as we all know, more fat, more taste but for those of us that enjoy purity, it is clearly about the origin and process. Bernachon in Lyon works chocolate the old-fashioned way or at east they used to. Copper pots and wooden spoons.
Just like coffee, chocolate is sometimes more about myth. More and more, chocolate is about accessibility, hand work is very costly, and the raw materials are expensive, and continue to rise in price. Higher percentages of cacao mean a more costly chocolate bar. Think about it, the bean is harvested by hand in the forest, pod breaking process, the pulp, fermentation process, drying process, storage, roasting, grinding it, or sending it to the end producer where they processes the bean into a bar.
Add to the equation the rarer types of cacao bean “Royal criollo”, from the region of , one of the most prized cacao in the Mayan and Aztec times. Apparently reserved for the royalty of the Mayan and Aztec civilizations and later for the Spanish royalty after the Spanish conquest. This chocolate is superb dark, not too bitter, nor too sweet (sugar) and has a good concentration.
Bonnat’s Cacao real del Xoconuzco is 75% Bittersweet Chocolate, rich, dense and intense tasting. It is one of the best I have tasted recently.