I just can’t resist trying weird chocolate and I’ve tried enough in my time – including the pleasant Zotter Plum with Caramelised Bacon bar which was far nicer than I thought It’d be. But what about this Vosges bacon bar? If you compared the packaging then I’d have to say the comical nature of the Zotter bar wins hands down. This Vosges bar had a visual that was a bit too realistic if you ask me. But perhaps they were looking for the ‘shock factor’ to entice people into buy? Well it certainly worked with me as I parted with £6.50 of my own money to try it.
It’s very difficult to get Vosges chocolate in the UK, but Firebox managed to get some from the chocolate importer HF Chocolates. But £6.50 for a bar that costs just $7.50 direct from Vosges in the States, isn’t that a touch too steep? I think this is very expensive for a ‘novelty chocolate’ which this is. I say ‘novelty’ as I doubt anyone would take it that seriously. I know Katrina, who’s behind the Vosges brand, has tinkered with bacon and chocolate since she was six, but I find it a bit too ‘left-field’ to review it with a straight face.
I didn’t even get a good look at the pattern on the bar before I was hit by the incredibly pungent bacon aroma. The first thing that came to mind was Frazzles which I avoided like the plague as a child. The aroma was far too over-powering and left me a touch unsure if I wanted to continue.
As I moved a section of the chocolate closer to my mouth the saltiness increased, however I managed to put the doubts to the back of my mind and tried a piece. Thankfully that saltiness was muted somewhat by the sweet 45% milk chocolate. It’s like having a Chinese meal, but in chocolate form – a sort of Sweet & Sour if you will?
What I didn’t realise at first was that there were dried juniper berries in there too. Even I didn’t get any of the crispiness from the bacon; it was nice to have something chewy within the chocolate. I think this added dimension added so much to the experience. If it were just bacon flavoured chocolate I think it would be slightly disappointing. But the juniper berries gave you something to chew on after the chocolate had melted and made the sweet flavour last.
I so wanted not to like this bar. The photography on the front of the package didn’t set a positive seen and then the aroma ensured that I was tentative about actually trying it. But, after a good few bites I found the bar incredibly pleasant. Of course it could never compete with Pralus, Chapon or Valrhona, but it wouldn’t be something I’d want to avoid in the future.
And if you wanted to know what Katrina says about the bar:
“I began experimenting with bacon + chocolate at the tender age of 6, while eating chocolate chip pancakes drenched in Aunt Jemima® syrup, as children often do. Beside my chocolate-laden cakes laid three strips of sizzlin’ bacon, just barely touching a sweet pool of maple syrup. And then, the magic—just a bite of the bacon was too salty and I yearned for the sweet kiss of chocolate and syrup, so I combined the two. In retrospect, perhaps this was a turning point; for on that plate something magical happened, the beginnings of a combination so ethereal and delicious that it would haunt my thoughts until I found the medium to express it—chocolate.
From there, it was just a matter of time…and what began as a love of salt and sweet quickly unravelled into an obsession. No sooner could I wait to unveil the royal coupling in solid bar form, a deep milk chocolate with bits and pieces of applewood smoked bacon and just a sprinkling of Alder salt. Really, what doesn’t taste better with bacon?”