Last year I shared my thoughts of Chocolate Tree's 85% Porcelana Chocolate and mentioned there was another bar Alastair sent me home with. This bar is part of the new smaller 40g range of chocolate bars from this Scottish bean-to-bar maker.
The bar is made with premium Pure Nacional cacao which is grown in the Marañón canyon at the foothills of the Andes. Chocolate Tree pays its farmers a premium to ensure the heritage cacao can thrive for the benefit of future generations of chocolate lovers and cacao farmers alike.
The video below shows snippets from Alastair and Friederike Gower's trip to the region. You can read more about their visit here.
The box was half the size of Chocolate Tree's 85% Porcelana chocolate bar I recently reviewed, containing a single 40g serving instead of two. But it also sits at a lower price point and is intended as a cheaper way for customers to discover the fascinating world of bean-to-bar chocolate.
The front of the box featured another geometric pattern, this time using alpacas or llamas (I think) in shades of blue and brown. Even though it was a smaller box compared to its 80g sibling, it still looks just a luxurious, helped by the splash of gold-foiled text. This bar also displayed the Academy of Chocolate Bronze badge.
Like it's sibling, the rear of the box contained some information on the cacao used in this bar, namely that it was "grown in the Marañón canyon at the foothills of the Andes".
The ingredients list and nutritional information took up the remainder of the space, in English as well as Swedish, Dutch, German, Spanish, and French, perhaps indicating a strong European demand for the bar.
Chocolate Tree 60% Marañón Milk Chocolate ingredients:
Cacao beans, organic milk powder (20%), organic cane sugar, organic cocoa butter. Cocoa content: 60% minimum.
The sugar content of the bar sat around 27½%, so together with the 20% milk content and the 60% cocoa content, I was looking forward to tasting a strongly-flavoured, slightly sweet, creamy milk chocolate bar.
Chocolate Tree 60% Marañón Milk Chocolate Review
Inside the box sat the 40g bar, wrapped in a home-compostable, plant-based film wrapper. The bar featured the same alpaca / llama repeating geometric pattern as my Porcelana sample bar, and again added a touch of fun and quirkiness here.
A clean and crisp snap saw this bar divide into random shapes quite easily. I managed to get eight segments out of it without being too stingy.
The rich, milky aroma hits you as soon as you tear the wrapper off. It's light and creamy, with notes of fudge and maple in the aroma.
The creamy quality is the first to come through in the flavour, quickly followed by an strong cocoa vibe. It's mildly bitter, but that is kept in check by the gentle sweetness and creaminess of the bar.
There's a tremendous depth of flavour to this rich milk chocolate - I picked up notes of caramel and toffee, and even faint citrus tones. As soon as you finish it though, the intensity vanishes, leaving a long-lasting gentle and satisfying cocoa taste behind. It's a delicious and satisfying bar of chocolate that feels luxurious and indulgent. The eight segments I mentioned earlier didn't last long at all.
At 60% cocoa content, it strays the line between milk and dark chocolate in character, and can be thought for as a dark milk chocolate. It's full of delicious cocoa flavour and just a hint of the bitter quality you'd associate with dark chocolate, but is rich and creamy as you'd expect a milk chocolate bar to taste.
If you prefer milk chocolate, you'll love the lashings of flavour this chocolate bar releases. If you prefer dark chocolate but aren't so keen on the bitterness of many bars, you'll love the way this bar balances the pure cocoa flavours against the organic milk powder and cane sugar.
Chocolate Tree 60% Marañón Milk Chocolate Bar Review
RRP: £2.95 | Chocolate Tree | Shop now
A grown-up milk chocolate bar, that is full of life and character courtesy of the single-origin heirloom Peruvian cacao. Absolutely delicious and addictively moreish.
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Have you tried any of Chocolate Tree's bars yet? What's your favourite? Let me know in the comments below.