* Prices may differ from that shown
Being a chocoholic (as some of you may have picked up), I watched and dribbled slightly at the Willie's Wonky Chocolate Factory series on channel 4. For those of you who didn't see it it followed Willie as he went about setting up and producing his own top quailty chocolate from his farm in Devon.
Willie is all about the natural flavour of the cacao, so don't expect a Mars bar from his products, this is chocolate as it used to be before we added lots of fat and sugar. Willie did a lot of work travelling and finding the right type of beans to grow and use in his products. Much like a coffee maker choosing the coffee beans or a wine expert tasting the right grapes, all the different varieties of cocoa bean give the end product a different flavour.
He ended up with a number of chocolates and cooking cacao made from different beans. Watching the series made me a lot more aware of what went into making a good chocolate and whilst I always liked the rich bitter dark chocolate, I think this programme made me want to explore the different varieties a lot more. I still love milk chocolate and whilst I often crave a toffee crisp, I get that they are two entirely different products and not even comparable to the pure stuff.
I read the descriptions on the three varieties of 'Willies Delectable Cacao" Bars they stocked in Waitrose and decided to go for 'Venezuelan 72' which has 'smooth fruity notes.'
Each 80g packet contains two square bars in a stylish dark brown box with embossed lettering. It has the motto 'one for now, one for then', which I liked. This 80g packet set me back a pricey £2.99, but then I wasn't expecting it to be cheap. I must admit I probably wouldn't spend this much on a bar of chocolate for me. So I didn't. I bought it as a present for my mum, in the hope it might turn out to be 'one for mum one for daughter'. My luck was in!
The bars are wrapped in gold paper and it really was a bit of a Willie Wonka experience opening it up! The chocolate was dark and glossy with the 'Willie's Cacao' logo on it.
The bars are a generous size considering how rich they are. I was surprised that the taste was not bitter but very smooth, still not sweet. It tastes like very good quality dark chocolate, though I couldn't really detect anything I'd not tasted before. Maybe I need to try the other varieties to taste the difference!
I can't comment on the calorie content as there was no such information on the packaging, however, it's fairly well known that good dark chocolate is the low calorie way of doing chocolate, and dark chocolate is even supposed to be good for you in moderation.
Overall, a good quality dark chocolate with a price to match, but I will be interested to try the other items in the range and see if I can taste the difference or if my taste buds have been numbed by Cadbury!!