Info Details
Country Austria   
Type Flavored   (Whisky; 70% cacáo-content)
Flavor Crossover   
Style Classic      
The great American botanical (Theobroma cacáo) meets the Scottish 'water of life' (regal whisky).

Year ago, starting in 2004, the C-spot® hoisted weekly chocolate flights at The Brandy Library in Manhattan's Tribeca district attended by local chefs & regulars (thank you, Flavian, Evan & the crew). It discovered then what this bar re-confirms now. Namely, that chocolate & double or triple distillates meld spectacularly into a confluence of the highest order. (Recommendation: imbibe first to allow the vapors to initialize & infuse the melt.)

Both give themselves up to become so manifold it requires calling on that most original English voice to take root in the New World -- Walt Whitman -- who encapsulated the obliteration of ego- unto meta-self with cosmic sensory overload in Section 51 of "Song of Myself":

“I am large, I contain multitudes”

Appearance   4.4 / 5
Color: a chestnut beauty
Surface: bit roughed up & rugged (especially the underside which bears the enrober's tread marks)
Temper: ripples & shudders
Snap: craggy as the Scottish highlands themselves
Aroma   8.9 / 10
color theme continues in the fragrance: sweet chestnut cream & aged chestnut wood finish -> breathes out distilled citrus mash (like an 25-year old Glennmorangie) + cocoa-blossom vapors -> (forested & mossy along the break-edge wall)
Mouthfeel   13.3 / 15
Texture: medium-gauge shell of a frame against a mousse-smooth interior
Melt: hydro as the finest smoke
Flavor   47.6 / 50
wild cherry-peat Milk Chocolate (what a boggling start) -> shifts quickly to a mellow fruit-cake compound besotted in alcohol -> old rum aspects -> oak tannins hold back the oncoming tide with true dark cask -> spectacular crush as the levee walls collapse, flooding the passages (olfactory, retro-olfactory & practically every bodily orifice) with maritime malt & vanilla in the wake -> damp woods empanel a library of flavors (seaweed, peat-moss, honey, prunes &, oddly, dried apricots, chocolate-ether, hickory nuts, + spicy-sweet reminiscences of some good 18-year old Dalmore 66-proof) -> Sauterne & rambutan wash over a caramel exit -> warm afterglow
Quality   17.8 / 20
If Coppeneur's Highland bar left any shred of doubt whatsoever about the preternatural symbiosis between Cacáo & Whisky, Zotter obliterates it in dispatching this distilled masterwork (to the pity of poor wine & beer combos).

A 'chocolate burn-off' (considering the hard liquor) pitting these two bars against one another seems apt since they're well-matched. Both contain a drop or two of milk; some vanilla; & a glucose sweetener. Hmmm, suspicious formulations. Chocolate espionage at work?

The main difference: Coppeneur adds chili pepper to its mix but that appears as a subtle (even extraneous) accent rather than any searing aggression. Zotter's selection creates plenty of radial warmth without the need to resort to peppered heat.

The other distinction between them: generally superior ingredients here. Zotter employs a couverture that affects more synergy than Coppeneur's.

He measures twice / pours once for near-perfection in a marked improvement from his topped-off Marc de Champagne. 10% Whisky in this formulation sounds overbearing except the fine grade Scotch pairs with a solid confection to counter, proving the motto luceo non urn (shine, no burn).

Finally, a key element here is the salt, harkening back to seas lashing the whisky as it just amplifies the marriage of flavors.

In sum, this possesses greater overall arc & mesh.

More than a bar but a brilliant dram of chocolate. And a stud.

INGREDIENTS: cocoa mass, sugar, whisky, cocoa butter, fructose-glucose syrup, milk, butter, salt, vanilla

Reviewed July 19, 2012


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