I do love the various Patrick Roger bars that I’ve reviewed so far, but was wary of trying this 100% bar as I found the Michel Cluizel Noir Infini 99% far too bitter for my taste. But I just don’t know how Patrick Roger can call this a 100% bar when there’s not only cacao solids in there, but also sugar, milk powder, vanilla extract and soya lecithin? Theoretically, at most this could be around 99%, but after tasting it I’d say it’s definitely lower in cacao than the Noir Infini.
My mother loves extremely dark chocolate and I know this bar will go down very well with her. But for me I do like the bitter end to be tempered with some caramel notes or anything to take the edge off the inherent bitterness that cacao has. But here there is a mild underbelly but that’s completed redundant against the bitter, sharp and perhaps, slightly unpleasant top note.
Don’t get me wrong, there is definitely something sophisticated about the bar. I know it’s refined and made by a master chocolatier. But the whole point of chocolate is to enjoy a sensuous moment. To me this like being forced to listen to unmelodic jazz especially when you could listen to Belle and Sebastian instead.
What I can’t understand is that the second largest ingredient in the bar is sugar but I just can’t pick up any sweet flavour. Apart from the cacao all I could find was the slightest vanilla. The problem is that vanilla historically has been used to mask poor-to-average cacao that doesn’t offer a smooth, characterful flavour. What’s more, this bar doesn’t even offer the sort of variable acidity that other fine dark chocolate bars do. Instead there’s just an all-consuming astringency without any sort of flavour.