The dangers of buying chocolate from around the world can be typified here. Having hardly reviewed any chocolate over the past three months due to moving and then settling into a new home I thought I’d treat myself to something special and order some chocolate from Dandelion and have it shipped all the way from San Francisco, USA. Of course I know about temperature shock and how getting chocolate sent from a hot region such as the west coast of America in August and having it spend a few days in various cold aeroplane holds and then being delivered into the warm (at the time) UK. But I never thought any chocolate would be so disastrously affected by blooming than this bar, and perhaps I had hoped for some protective packaging?
Of course the wrapper is superb and their back story is similarly inspiring. Dandelion is the exactly the sort of chocolate I aim to promote here. This is the sort of chocolate British, European and, indeed, worldwide chocolate lovers should be trying. The true craft of chocolate making is certainly seeing a new lease of life and that has gone hand-in-hand with the ethical and sustainable sourcing of fine cocoa beans and that is one of the major reasons I blog – promote the fine,ethical chocolate that can be found if you know where to look. The more people that try chocolate from the likes of Dandelion and are willing to pay more for the chocolate, the better for the people that actually grow and harvest the beans that form the chocolate.
The blooming that I witnessed with the Patanemo and the Ambanja (I’ve not checked the Mantuano – have now and its awesome!) only serves to highlight the delicate state that fine chocolate finds itself in. Typically chocolate from the likes of Mars, Nestle or the others will be created to withstand these sort of logistical issues, and to my mind taste much worse as a consequence.
For those interested Patanemo is the western most valley that along the northern coast of Venezuela that is also home to other awesome sources such as Ocumare, Cuyagua, Choroni, Chuao which is responsible for some of the world’s finest cacao. If you do find yourself at a website selling chocolate and you don’t know where to start, certainly have a look for some of these names.
The issue with having a chocolate so radically tainted as this is that a review is pointless. The texture, taste, aroma and physical appearance is nothing like how it was created. I’d only be wasting your time along with my money (I’m not a Mr grumpy as I knew the risks). All I can do is point you towards a review I forgot I had written a few months ago on my retail site where I had more success. I’m just glad I opened a couple up before I sent them on to friends to try as I intended to. If you would like to read a bit more widely consider these other reviews: The Chocolate Clinic and Ceder.