Crea Venezuela 74% 86/100

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From the north West of Italy in the Piedmont region, Crea are importers and refiners of high quality food products, with their range extending as far as single origin chocolate tablets. Here we have their single origin offering from Venezuela designed to showcase Venezuela as a country wide origin.

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In terms of a single origin rather than single estate or single varietal bar, I would expect more generally archetypal flavours for that origin. Having tried plenty of Venezuelan cacao, I’d expect this bar to exhibit cocoa flavours with the addition of caramel and nuts, offering hopefully some refinement to the quality of flavours being delivered. Opening the bar I’m presented with Crea’s attractive cocoa pod and leaf crazy paving slab, with uneven sized pieces that have a decent snap to them as I break a piece off revealing some simple but indicative aromas of cocoa, caramel, vanilla and almond. So far it’s as expected, placing a piece in my mouth there’s a heavy smooth and creamy feel to the bar, which to taste begins with nuts, cocoa and caramel. As these archetypal flavours proceed there’s a noticeable whiteness to both the sweetness and acidity, with a low hum of white sugar and guava and lychee help to lift the experience, which while exhibiting some refinement is essentially a little simple and underwhelming. There’s quality attributes here in terms of the balance and the quality of the flavours, but this bar rests more on its processing than it does on exhibiting the fine qualities of its terroir. There are pleasant flavours and a creamy balanced nature to the cocoa, which offers something accessible and without a lot of criticism, but this bar fails to display great depth or dimension and its simplicity loses some attention. Best enjoyed to understand simply, Venezuelan cacao or for something relaxing lacking challenge.

Ingredients: Cocoa mass, sugar, cocoa butter, emulsifier: soy lecithin, natural vanilla extract

Appearance 8.5/10

Colour: Darker earthy brown
Texture: Cream swirl
Mould: Cocoa pod and leaf 6 block crazy pave
Snap: Crisp, thick
Temp/Shine: Matte gloss

Aroma 8.5/10

Intensity(0-10): 8
Notes: Cocoa, caramel, vanilla, almond
Quality: Simple, refined

Melt/Mouthfeel 8.5/10

Length: Long, firm
Evenness: Even
Texture: Creamy, smooth
Quality: Refined, smooth, heavy

Acidity 8.5/10

Intensity(0-10): 2
Notes: Guava, lychee
Quality: Background, uplifting

Sweetness 8.5/10

Intensity(0-10): 7
Notes: Caramel, white fruit sugar
Quality: Uplifting, balancing

Flavour 8.5/10

Intensity(0-10): 7.5
Type: Sweet, bitter
Notes: Almond, cocoa, caramel, butter, cream, vanilla
Quality: Simple, refined

Length 8.5/10

Bar has a long length, but flavours themselves are more medium in length, bar is smooth rather than round

Finish 9/10

Notes: Cream, almond
Quality: Bar winds down to a creamy finish with a touch of almond, with creamy sweet tones lingering on long after the finish

Balance 9/10

Bar is smooth and balanced, strong structure provides plenty of anchoring and refined nature coupled with processing produces simple but evident balance

Overall 8.5/10

Bar has low amounts of depth and dimension, flavour is there it’s just not resounding, small amount of complexity is well balanced, structure is consistent, expression seems honest while overtly managed and smoothed out by the processing

Tasting Notes:

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