Lindt 85% Dark 83/100

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This bar is made from a blend of cocoa beans from origins such as Ghana, Latin America (mainly Ecuador), Madagascar and the Caribbean Islands using a high amount of criollo and trinitario varieties. You can read more about Lindt & Sprungli’s productions and sustainability processes at http://www.lindt.co.uk/world-of-lindt/sustainability/our-commitment/

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I’ve tried this bar many times before, although not that often as a bar for eating, most of my experience using various percentages of Lindt’s dark chocolate have been with baking or making ganache due to its ready availability on the high street and its preferable flavour profile to the likes of other common types of dark chocolate. My experience of Lindt’s dark range has always been of archetypal chocolate flavours that are presented in a smooth and fairly vanillary format, designed for emboldening with other flavours or as a generally mild eating bar. Opening the bar I’m presented with that most familiar of mouldings the Lindt 5 x 2 thin squares, breaking off a piece reveals a nutty caramel set of aromas, with notes of milk or nut milks, which is unusual for a dark bar and a few light florals on the finish. Placing a piece in my mouth develops a syrupy mouthfeel with smooth caramel textures but a cloying lightly astringent finish. To taste this bar is fairly as expected, but in honesty there’s a subtly complicated set of flavours beneath dominant simple flavours. Bittersweet cocoa and dark sugars dominate the proceedings but there’s some muted underlying flavours of delicate white fruit and nuts in the mix. There’s a strong presence of vanilla in the finish, which helps to smooth the bar out, but in general this bar is intense and robust in dark cocoa flavour, it’s palatable rather than pleasurable. This bar seems best for providing a bittersweet nature to other products like brownies or chocolate coatings, rather than as an eating bar in its own right. Pair with robust aged red wines.

Ingredients: Cocoa mass, fat-reduced cocoa, cocoa butter, demerara sugar, vanilla

Appearance 9/10

Colour: Darker caramel brown
Texture: Very smooth, solid
Mould: 5 x 2 Lindt printed squares
Snap: Crisp
Temp/Shine: Matte gloss, consistent

Aroma 8.5/10

Intensity(0-10): 8
Notes: Caramel, milk, nut milk, light floral
Quality: Simple, refined, light

Melt/Mouthfeel 8/10

Length: Long
Evenness: Even
Texture: Syrupy, caramel, lightly astringent
Quality: Smooth, cloying, thick

Acidity 8/10

Intensity(0-10): 2
Notes: White grape, melon
Quality: Mute, complementary, lightly uplifting

Sweetness 8/10

Intensity(0-10): 7
Notes: Caramel, demerara sugar, toffee
Quality: Raw, complementary, simple

Flavour 8/10

Intensity(0-10): 8
Type: Bitter, sweet
Notes: Bittersweet cocoa, caramel, cake ends, demerara sugar, hazelnut, white grape, vanilla
Quality: Smooth, simple, deep

Length 8.5/10

Flavours are fairly long, rounding subtly on waves of muted acidity

Finish 8.5/10

Notes: Bittersweet cocoa, hazelnut, vanilla, cream
Quality: Cocoa, hazelnut and vanilla fill the end before a creamy finish that improves the mouthfeel and lingers on coating the mouth

Balance 8.5/10

Bar does have balance, but this comes from its simplicity, there are complementary flavours and they are smooth, but this feels processed rather than natural, solid structure provides a lot of stability

Overall 8/10

Bar has some depth, but lacks any dimension, there’s little complexity to balance, which is heavily stepped on with cocoa butter and vanilla, solid structure is consistent, expression is true of processing and chocolate work


Lindt Tasting Notes: The Lindt EXCELLENCE 85% Cocao chocolate bar is an intensely flavoured fine dark chocolate with a strong aroma and full-bodied cocoa taste, which is perfectly balanced, being neither bitter nor overpowering. Aromas include dried fruit and licorice as well as powerful earthy tones.

 

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