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Info Details
Country France   
Type Semi-Dark   (70%)
Strain Amazon   
Source Peru   (José's place)
Flavor Fruits & Flowers   (practically sugar sweet)
Style Classic      
lo
med
hi
CQ
Sweetness
Acidity
Bitterness
Roast
Intensity
Complexity
Structure
Length
Impact
The Spanish name José is about as common as the English Joe or John.

This one from Peru is no ordinary José however. Then again, with the abundant cacáo diversity in that country awaiting further exploration if only it can survive the onslaught of insipid clones invading the land, maybe some day it won't seem so extraordinary after all.
Appearance   4 / 5
Color: lightly blushing cream brown
Surface: brush strokes of French impressionism, including voids on the "canvas"
Temper: shifty
Snap: on demand
Aroma   8.6 / 10
initial roasted filberts give way to open-fired corn kernels, then just plain creosote in the dirt
mentholates on a sharp but narrow tip that carries a fermented, slightly souring point that straddles salad greens & green fruit
full of intrigue & invitation
Mouthfeel   12.4 / 15
Texture: the 'A' in A. Morin stands for Aeronautic… always a smooth glide
Melt: hydrates at the expense of some fat globules left, momentarily, behind which join the party & dissolve later
Flavor   45.9 / 50
gianduia (chocolate filberts) -> almonds -> cream fruit / white fruit (pear & cherimoya) -> more hazelnuts -> goes nectarine + add aguaje (a yellow-fleshed fruit) & taperiba -> a fraction of talc in the backset, the single off-note which contributes to a dry clean finish (stringent)
Quality   17.6 / 20
Forget PB&J… how 'bout hazelnut butter & jelly instead.

One juicy charmer. Perhaps a bit too exuberant like some queer nation queen all dressed & made-up for the weekend, heading off on Thursday evening & going strong 'til the wee hours Monday morning… oh, hell, why stop there… it all just never quits even after the throat clears for the last time. No diminution over the course of the progression; just the opposite, it picks up flavors & accumulates them along the way.

Even the lone deficiency -- that mildly caustic talc -- contributes an offset which, with so much packed fruit beforehand, almost fills in as a disguised dry Zinfandel.

Hazelnut likewise deceives -- of Madagascar, except it presents so early & prominently here where that island's hazelnut-inflections usually occur subtly & late. Then the quality of the acidity clarifies the orientation: Peru.

Franck Morin transacts with properties due east of Lima in the Amazon. The trees there stand beautifully -- old growth with big but few pods. They're dying out because planters make more money from citrus. Morin hopes that even these small quantities will show locals, governmental officials & consumers worldwide of the potential of these cacáos before they vanish altogether.

Their CQ (Chocolate Quotient or core basal cocoa flavor), while adequate (particularly at the beginning), might use a bit more roast to open up more for that... to the bar's overall benefit which would drive its ratings into the stratosphere.

From a barsmith who has crafted several strong Peruvian bars already, this ranks as his best to date from there.

INGREDIENTS: cocoa mass, sugar, cocoa butter

Reviewed November 26, 2014

  

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