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Pump Street Christmas Bakery Chocolate Bar Reviews

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Ever since my encounter with Pump Street's 66% Sourdough & Sea Salt chocolate bar, I knew I needed to try more of their bars. Incorporating delicacies from Pump Street Bakery into small-batch bean-to-bar chocolate bars is perhaps where Pump Street Chocolate's strength truly lies.

So, when I clocked their Gingerbread and Panettone dark chocolate bars, I knew I needed to try them. If sourdough bread in chocolate tasted that good, imagine how delicious festive treats wrapped up in chocolate would taste!

I was due to pop into the Orford village bakery en-route to a family funeral, but I was advised to order these bars online as they were in short supply. A few days later a box arrived at my door.


Pump Street Christmas Bakery Chocolate Bar Reviews

The bars come in largely identical beige pouches, with press-seal tops and what looks like a foiled inside coating. A large Pump Street Chocolate logo appears at the top, with a sticker containing the product name beneath this.

The tactile resealable pouches are sealed with a golden sticker detailing the batch number and year of crop. You would be forgiven for thinking these pouches aren't recyclable but in fact the resealable envelope and the stickers are all 100% compostable.

Pump Street Christmas Bakery Chocolate Bar Reviews
Pouches of Pump Street Chocolate

On the reverse is an introduction to Pump Street Chocolate, followed by a sticker with a description of the chocolate bar, ingredients (in English, German, and French), and nutritional information.

The 70g chocolate bars are made in a facility that also handles dairy, gluten, nuts and seed products.


Pump Street Gingerbread 70% Dark Chocolate Review

Pump Street Gingerbread 70% Dark Chocolate bar ingredients:
Cocoa beans, organic cocoa butter, cane sugar, flour (wheat), butter, sugar, eggs, black treacle, ginger, cinnamon, cardamom, baking powder, salt. Cocoa solids: 70% minimum.

  • 22.6% sugars
  • What they say: A limited-edition bar made with cocoa beans from the Bachelor's Hall Estate in St Thomas, Jamaica, together with freshly baked gingerbread cookies.
  • What I say: There's a lovely dark, rich and comforting aroma that wafts from the pouch the moment you open it. The fragrance reminds me of caramelised biscuits more than it does gingerbread, with hints of smokey and woody notes alongside. Dark and rich also perfectly describes the flavour of this bar too. The flavour of the gingerbread comes through clearly but is subtle during the melt. It dances with the smooth and rich dark chocolate right to the end. As soon as the chocolate vanishes, the gingerbread suddenly ramps up before fading back down, side-by-side with the rich, and ever-so-slightly bitter chocolate. The aftertaste of chocolate-smothered dark gingerbread lingers long afterwards.
  • Verdict: I was expecting to find nuggets of gingerbread running through this bar in much the same way as sourdough crisps ran through the 66% chocolate bar. Instead, the gingerbread pieces are much finer here so flavour the bar without adding to its texture. That results in a smooth product and a delicate gingerbread flavour, although I craved a little crunch or chew during the melt. The gingerbread flavour comes through clearly and doesn't thrust itself upon you, working in balance with the Jamaican cocoa. Overall, it's a well balanced bar and I found it almost too easy to eat this chocolate. It's particularly moreish, and my 70g bar didn't last long.

Pump Street Gingerbread 70% Dark Chocolate Review

RRP: £6.25 | Pump Street Chocolate | Shop now

Dark, rich and smooth, this bar delivers on flavour while allowing the characteristics of the chocolate to come through. I would have liked to see larger pieces of gingerbread in the mix to add a textural chew or crunch, but otherwise it's a very fine bar indeed.

Packaging
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Score: 4.6

Pump Street Panettone 70% Dark Chocolate Review

Pump Street Panettone 70% Dark Chocolate bar ingredients:
Cocoa beans, cane sugar, organic cocoa butter, flour (wheat), butter, egg yolk, malt extract, honey, salt, panettone natural essence, vanilla paste, Armagnac, candied orange peel, almonds, sugar crystals. Cocoa solids: 70% minimum.

  • 27.9% sugars
  • What they say: A rich dark chocolate made with beans from Crayfish Bay Organic Estate in Grenada, loaded with candied fruit, and topped with almonds and sugar crystals.
  • What I say: Open the pouch and you're greeted with a rich, savoury, bready aroma. It didn't conjure up images of a freshly-baked Italian Panettone, but it did smell like I'd stepped into a bakery. The aroma is punctuated by the rich smokiness from the dark chocolate and toasted notes from the almonds on top. The chocolate yields its flavour straight away, with smokey, woody notes setting the baseline. A faint strand of bitterness ran to one side, but was balanced by the sweetness from the crunchy sugar crystals and almonds on top. Towards the end, as you begin to chew, mild citrus flavours develop as a nod towards panettone. Hit upon a chunk of chocolate with a piece of candied orange peel inside and these notes intensify.
  • Verdict: While the combination of orange and almonds works very well with the smokey, rich Grenadian dark chocolate, it doesn't really remind me of an Italian panettone. The chocolate has such a punchy flavour profile that the subtle nuances of panettone are lost. That may well be as I'm comparing it to a supermarket panettone rather than Pump Street's Bakery famed Panettone which uses sourdough, is filled with peel and raisins, and is toped with almonds and sugar crystals. In that context, it's perhaps the chocolatey equivalent of their festive delicacy. Nevertheless, it's still a very characterful bar with a festive feel to it.

Pump Street Panettone 70% Dark Chocolate Review

RRP: £6.25 | Pump Street Chocolate | Shop now

Smokey dark chocolate paired with orange peel for a citrus undertone, topped with crunchy roasted almonds and sweet white sugar crystals. Indulgent and satisfying, although it doesn't match the flavours of Panettone I've tried. This bar is perhaps best served alongside a freshly baked Panettone from Pump Street Bakery to compare and contrast.

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Score: 4.4

Where to Buy Online

You'll find the Gingerbread and Panettone dark chocolate bars available on the Pump Street Chocolate website here (£6.25 each). They are seasonal bars so tend to be in more plentiful supply towards winter.

Besides these bars, Pump Street Chocolate also makes a range of other bakery-inspired chocolate bars: Eccles 55%; Brown Bread 40%; Hot Cross Bun 58%; Rye Crumb, Milk & Sea Salt 60%; and Sourdough & Sea Salt 66% (£6.25 each).

Selected Pump Street Chocolate bars are available at Chocolate Trading Co here°, at Cocoa Runners here, and on Amazon here°.

Chocolate Trading Company offer:

Save 10% on orders, excluding trade and sale products. Use code CHOCO10June22 at the checkout. Shop now°

Ends on Thursday 30th June 2022. Terms and exclusions may apply. See website for details.

Chocolate Trading Company offer:

Save 15% when you spend £80+ online, excluding trade and sale products. Use code SAVE15 at the checkout. Shop now°

Ends on Wednesday 31st August 2022. Terms and exclusions may apply. See website for details.

Chocolate Trading Company offer:

Get free delivery on orders over £35 (excluding sales and trade items). Use code WYS35 at the checkout. Shop now°

Ends on Wednesday 31st August 2022. Terms and exclusions may apply. See website for details.

Do you have a favourite Pump Street chocolate bakery bar? Share your top tips in a comment below.

Disclosure: I purchased two 70g Christmas chocolate bars from Pump Street Chocolate for £12.50. I was not asked for a review. My opinions are my own.

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