On my chocolate adventure, I decided to include specialty chocolate bars in my reviews because most of us will hesitate to spend $4 or more on a bar unless we know it is worth it. Haven’t we all had those times when you are out shopping and caught sight of the fancy chocolate bar display and simply think “I wonder….”? Well, someone has to sacrifice themselves for the greater good, so I decided that these higher end specialty bars should be reviewed here in addition to the artisan chocolate makers. The bonus is that these bars will often store well for a longer time than most truffles which means that you can invest in a bar and savour it over time.
One of these bars I found recently at Planet Organic is the Zazubean bar. The main attraction to these bars over others for me was the fact that Zazubean is a Canadian company out of Vancouver, British Columbia. British Columbia has a very active chocolate industry with many fabulous artisan chocolatiers. Some I have discovered already but there are many others which are still awaiting discovery. Based on that, I was excited to see a Canadian bar company and I decided to purchase the Hottie bar. A couple of things made me decide to buy this particular bar. Number one – I have a really good friend from Ontario who nicknamed me hottie over the years and I smiled thinking about her and our adventures. Number two – the ingredients were chili and cinnamon which I thought would be pretty unique and number three – I wanted to take some risks in flavour combinations.
By now I am sure you are wondering what it looks like so without further ado, here are some photos.
As you can see, there is significant fat bloom on this bar. Fat bloom results when the chocolate has warmed up, the fat melts and rises to the top of the chocolate. When it cools, a whitish/discoloured layer will show up as in the picture. Luckily the chocolate is still edible!
After all that lead up, let’s find out about the chocolate!! If you are a fan of strong cinnamon, then this bar is for you. At first you can only taste the chocolate but it is quickly followed by chili and cinnamon. The cinnamon can be quite a bit overwhelming and stays in your in the back of your mouth for a long time after you have eaten the chocolate. The chocolate itself is smooth and well tempered. I even shared with my husband and son as it is a large bar. My son was not impressed and did not finish his two squares while my husband had to take a sip of water as he found the chili really increased the intensity of the cinnamon.
This bar is definitely to be eaten in small quantities over time. After tasting it, I would prefer a smaller bar overall as it will likely take me a long time to finish it due to the intense flavour. I wouldn’t have it again but that is only because it is a very strong flavour but if you like intense, it would probably be for you. I am going to try their other flavour bars and hope that they don’t have any bloom.