Info Details
Country USA   
Type Dark   (72%; Batch CMS-3)
Strain Hybrid   (T Clonal Series)
Source Vietnam   
Flavor Fruits & Flowers   
Style Mainstream      
The first single-origin of any consequence harvested in Viêt Nam.

Hippies can play like it’s the ‘60s déjà vu all over again now that they’re in their 60s. Another sign, John & Yoko, that war is over. The USA never lost a battle while the Vietnamese won.

Country Joe, open up those pearly gates... in whoopie ‘foodie-speak’ “ahh.... to die for” & “gone to heaven”.

VC PR fool-tool, Hanoi Jane (with apologies), you were dead right... in the absolute wrong way.

Ho, exemplar of a book titled Bare Feet, Iron Will as well as the namesake for the Ho Chí Minh Trail, once lived in Paris among other places to know good chocolate, maybe even incorporated it into the simple-life at his house-on-stilts Nha Bac Ho, must literally DIG-IT-LOL (Dancing In Grave, In Tears...)

Nixon & Kissinger finally achieve peace with honor.

Cacáo has come to / from Viêt Nam... to help refoliate the ground.

Thank you, American GIs: both modern & Mayan.

Appearance   4.2 / 5
Color: medium umber
Surface: as ever w/ Scharffen Berger, ‘a looker’, despite less-than-stellar face plate & thick fudge whirls on the back
Temper: short; semi-flat
Snap: thin, bright & high ('Central Command - we got a problem')
Aroma   7.8 / 10
a delta dooky pile of rice & spice (cinnamon + Viet coriander – unique by lighter lemon inclusion) & roasted compost (heavy-streaming gas-fired, highlighting ambrette aka rose mallow – musk w/ brandy-tobacco undertones, the latter promoted no doubt by vanilla-cocoa) -> greens (bay laurel & rice paddy herb + a picholine olive) cut by fruits (sunberry & rambutan)
Mouthfeel   11.4 / 15
Texture: foreseen in the Temper, heard in the Snap, now felt in the Texture: Flintstone bedrock...
Melt: ... choppy in lumps & clumps
Flavor   44.1 / 50
cocoa crisps (w/ brown rice) shielded in banana leaf & palmetto -> coriander -> bright if light sunberry shines thru -> dark cocoa, this round accompanied by that Aromatic olive + black mission figs & vanilla in alluvial soils -> fishtails back to cocoa, then peels out on banana fruit & fudge slick
Quality   17.5 / 20
As always, S-B processes for the Hi-Fruit mix. Who knows just how ‘single-origin’ Ben Tre is. Never one for full disclosure -- witness the label’s Cuyagua which turned out to be a blend of different regional origins -- this too might pull from multiple sources.

Ben Tre Province sits deep in the south of the country, along part of that 9-headed river dragon called the Mekong Delta. The 1st area in Viêt Nam to be cultivated for cacáo, it reportedly practices higher quality control.

This seems to exceed the apparent clonal series planted there (nothing to-date from the parent Malaysia &/or Costa Rica seedlings would suggest it). Perhaps accountable to the rumors of an improbable 9-day curing cycle, likely by fermentary warlord Nam Suong of the Chau Thanh District, in a pulp characterized as a ‘sweet ‘n sour’ combo.

A bar that rather gently spans out in an almost equal number of ways. Overall slender profile; lacks mass & amplitude but nice fruited undertow which flows in & out of a randomized cocoa (again, some Textural blame & maybe added powder??) thru an otherwise well-formulated CBS (Cocoa Mass/Butter/Sugar ratio) of ~ 2:3:2.

Still makes for a kind chocolate.

ING: cocoa mass, sugar, cacáo butter, soy lecithin, whole vanilla

Reviewed Autumn 2010


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