Lauden Peru 65% 84.5/100

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Using cocoa beans from the rainforests of Peru, Sun and Stephen Trigg use their chocolate know how to help turn these into one of their chocolate bars at their workshop in Kirkstall, Leeds.

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Peru can be a hard origin to pin down with different flavours coming from the different genetics and the different growing regions of Peru’s diverse landscape. Here I would expect a general profile of Peru, but I’m still not sure what that is, whether it’s citrus or raisins, honey and nuts or red fruits and florals. Opening the bar it has a strong aroma and some professional looking processing, snapping off a piece there’s aromas of nuts and honey with a touch of citrus, I think it might be one of those Peruvians. The glossy and professional finish to the chocolate plays out in a thin and quick melt that almost feels too refined, before I take a look at the ingredients I’m already suspecting a lot of additional cocoa butter. To taste the bar has a similar profile with hazelnuts, butterscotch and honey in the front and some citrus fruit and acidity in the back to balance out the sweetness. This is a very accessible bar, you could give this to almost anyone and no one would complain about it being dark, it’s almost as approachable as a milk. The general profile is light and sweet with some bright fruit for balance, which is one of the bars stronger attributes. The bar is nice don’t get me wrong and there’s a lovely flavour there, but it lacks substance and dimension and anything of significant interest. This is a non-threatening simple bar that offers chocolate flavour without challenge or pretension, a perfect beginner chocolate for those making the transition to dark and higher percentage chocolate.

Ingredients: Organic cocoa mass; organic cane sugar; organic cocoa butter 6.0%; emulsifier: organic soya lecithin; organic natural bourbon vanilla powder.

Appearance 9/10

Colour: Medium brown
Texture: Smooth, light flake
Mould: 5×3 Lauden imprint indent cubes
Snap: Very crisp
Temp/Shine: Glossy sheen

Aroma 8.5/10

Intensity(0-10): 9
Notes: Hazelnuts, honey, almond, lemon
Quality: Sweet, distinctive

Melt/Mouthfeel 8/10

Length: Medium, somewhat quick melt
Evenness: Even, but quick
Texture: Slick, glossy, smooth
Quality: Light, thin, refined

Acidity 8.5/10

Intensity(0-10): 4
Notes: Lime, lemon
Quality: Refined, uplifting

Sweetness 8.5/10

Intensity(0-10): 9
Notes: Butterscotch, honey
Quality: Smooth, refined, light

Flavour 8.5/10

Intensity(0-10): 8
Type: Sweet
Notes: Hazelnuts, butterscotch, honey, lime, vanilla
Quality: Light, bright, smooth

Length 8/10

Flavours go a fair distance, but they’re not quite long, round comes on the end of butterscotch notes

Finish 8.5/10

Notes: Butterscotch, honey, hazelnuts
Quality: The end of the bar is filled with sweet butterscotch and honey notes before a hazelnut finish that lingers

Balance 9/10

This bar is fairly balanced for one with a light structure, no particular element of the bar is overtly bold, but flavours work well in combination

Overall 8/10

Bar has a bit of depth, but generally lacks dimension, lack of complexity helps the balance, structure is uniformly light and expression is honest of terroir, but processing, cocoa butter and vanilla stamp heavily in this area


Lauden’s Tasting Notes: Long chocolate notes with a hint of ripe fruits

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