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Info Details
Country UK   
Type Dark   (71%; Batch #110014)
Strain Ocumare   
Source Venezuela   (Ocumare de la Costa Valley)
Flavor Naked   
Style Mainstream      
lo
med
hi
CQ
Sweetness
Acidity
Bitterness
Roast
Intensity
Complexity
Structure
Length
Impact
Ocumation... the chocolate equivalent of Occupation.

If Wall Street, Washington, City of London, Beijing, World Bank, WTO, & IMF represent the interests of the 1% (&, to mark Thanksgiving Day 2011, the "gobble-ization" of the planet), then ADM, Cargill, Callebaut, Nestlé’s, Petra, etc. -- lumped together as "Big Candy" by the C-spot™ -- plus their hedge fund partners like Armajaro & lobbying arms such as WCF (World Cocoa Foundation), do likewise for their constituency -- the candy industry.

Where the OPEC cartel forms an oil monopoly from the seller’s or supply side, Big Candy controls price from the buyer’s side. In effect, a monopsony; but sorry, Barbie, it ain't no board game. It's a scramble over land, livelihoods, volume & scale, played out in emerging economies. Most notably Africa and Indonesia -- those generally relaxed places when it comes to hardcore business, & euphemistically referred to as "cacáo lounges" here.

There the industrial giants process 90%+ of the trade, almost all of it bulk grade cocoa beans.

Moving rather quietly in the undergrowth among the trees & the weeds are a small band of barsmiths like Duffy's Red Star. These new era bean-to-bar makers, a collective of optimists, idealists, romantics, dreamers, visionaries, & radicals… imagineers who happily pioneer the borders of chocolate… all kindred spirits to the ethical & social capitalists of chocolate's past -- the Meniers, Cadbury's & Hershey's -- often deal directly with those who tend to rare premium varietals in a quest to revive cacáo's former glory & lost nobility while abiding by modern principles of sound environmental & economic performance.

Consider them a Heritage Preservation Society & then do the calculus on how important a factor they play in reconciling the total equation of the 1% + the 99% that might some day add up to 100% prosperity.
Appearance   4 / 5
Color: dark oxide brown
Surface: solid
Temper: tempermental
Snap: a castanet
Aroma   8.1 / 10
recessed almond milk cream + latex rubber -> eventuates dusted dried-cherry
Mouthfeel   12.3 / 15
Texture: bit dry
Melt: enduring
Flavor   44.1 / 50
panned chocolate almonds -> straight chocolate -> cocoa powder -> brownie -> lite spice (sassafras & vanilla) under-girded by tonka (especially its hay component) -> a cream-seam lines the finish of some chocolate char with black-cherry fringe
Quality   15.4 / 20
Duffy's customary stout styling drives off Ocumare's delicate esters which results in precious few offsets for a very steadfast bar instead. Occupies center-point chocolate of hi-CQ (or basal Chocolate Quotient flavoring) but consequently very little "happens" in the way of transitions, shifts, changes.

A direct in-your-mouth chocolate & nothing but.

And nothing wrong with that.

ING: cocoa mass, sugar, cocoa butter, sunflower lecithin

Reviewed November 24, 2011

  

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