Regular readers will know that Zotter needs no introduction. You would have come across the plum and caramelised bacon bar, the one with olives and lemons, the one with peanuts and ketchup and even the one with fish in. But a chocolate bar which has ingredients more in common with a salad than confectionery? Surely not? Well it’s always good to never underestimate the imagination of Josef Zotter and his team.
Just as with their other bars, the ingredients are mostly Fairtrade and organic. I know they have their own farm but I’m not sure if these grapes come from local sources and although they have their own cows (I believe) I also doubt that they make their own cheese which actually makes up 5% of this bar. Along with the cheese, the walnuts and the grapes you’ll fine apple balsamic vinegar, Grappa, lemon concentrate and a touch of Bird’s eye chilli – although that’s hardly noticeable.
Some might think that having ingredients that are so different that shouldn’t work well together. But that couldn’t be further from the truth. The aroma is sweet and with a hint of the booze contained within but it was mostly of freshly baked malt loaf. If this doesn’t pique your interest, I don’t know what will.
The 60% dark chocolate encases a fine balance of flavours that does lean heavily on the acidic, but not so much that it becomes caustic for its much more like the Grappa that you’ll find inside. I didn’t get so much of the walnut in terms of the flavour, but I’m sure in contributed to the aroma.
Part of me wished for some intense, creamy cheese notes, but they seem to form more of the base of the flavour range for the raisins and Grappa to play its part. It’s these raisins, however, that I just loved in the texture, which is mainly of the moist cookie dough than that of cheese. These grapes will appear seemingly out of nowhere and not only provide a hint of sweetness but a softer texture.
As my palette got used to the sweet and grape flavours it became more aware of the cheese notes which did have the intensity you can find and more aged and properly farm-made cheeses.
Those willing to try funky and unusual chocolate will be rewarded with a very enjoyable experience – one that should really be shared as it can be a bit ‘too much’ if consumed in one go. If I had to compare this bar to the recent Around The World, I’d have to give that one my preference as its milder and less tart. Still, this one is enjoyable if consumed slowly.