When the days are as long as you want the nights to be, there’s nothing better to chow down to than a bar of chilli chocolate. Many big name chocolate makers offer chilli chocolate bars because they know they have a very strong following, but to me they often taste artificial as they regularly choose to use bought in chiili oil or flakes that have been hanging around for far too long. But the Dartmoor Chilli Farm grow their chillies in probably the most unspoilt area of the UK – Dartmoor.
I just love this area of the country and have spent many an hour getting absolutely lost there, but what I do know is that the local authorities are very protective of the environment (often anally so), which means that the produce is relatively unspoiled. When you add that fact to the one that the Chilli Farm have won the South Devon Excellence awards for Best Green Business in 2010 then you know you’re on to a winner.
Last year I tried their dark chilli with coffee bar which was absolutely fantastic and now I try one that replaces the coffee with peppermint. Again the packaging is simple yet effective. If you’re buying from a small scale producer there’s no way they could afford to compete with the ‘big boys’ for elegance and design. Here you get a very simply designed bar with a decent label and all the ingredient information on the reverse.
Moving on to the aroma there is a pleasant earthiness to it but which is still managed to be complimented by a lovely dose of the peppermint. At no stage does the chilli come through, this you will have to wait until you bite a piece off.
What I do love about this bar is that this chilli is dominant. I’ve now had a few pieces and that slight burning feeling is still present at the back of the throat and will last for many more minutes yet. As with all chilli chocolate, the chilli comes through a good while after the other flavours have had their say. The first to be noticed was the mild 70% dark chocolate which quickly gives way to the peppermint which is also fairly understated and then that chilli comes through with great force. It slowly builds up to a crescendo and then slowly falls back into a fairly ‘dull’ roar.
I just love this mint chilli chocolate bar. I know there’s nothing elegant or sophisticated about it, what it does offer is a great warming feeling – not only from the chilli, but also from the fact that you’re supporting a small, green business. The bars are only £2.95, so if you like your chocolate ‘hot’ then go and buy yourself some.