Camino Verde; Marañón; Genmaicha Crunch

by Raaka
Info Details
Country USA   
Type Semi-Dark   (80%; 70%; Flavored 64%)
Source (Ecuador; Peru; Bolivia)
Flavor Fruits & Flowers   (x Spices/Herbs)
Style New School      
A Chocolate Trifecta –- 3 reviews in 1. The overall rating & metrics (upper right) reflect a composite average of each bar's individual measures.

Looking for the chocolate code can be likened to searching for a key to a lock. But what happens if in that search for the key, all the while the lock does not exist? Oh so idiots will persist anyways.

Good chocolate, as opposed to any old chocolate, supposedly requires a proper roast. Here’s the disproof.
Appearance   4.2 / 5
Color: darker than expected for an un-roasted line, especially the Camino bar
Surface: slate
Temper: solar eclipse
Snap: warning -- earplugs required
Aroma   6.8 / 10
Marañón Canyon
hamster action under a berry bush

Camino Verde
wow, Cinnamon Red Hots® hotter than…. well, than Cinnamon Red Hots® fizzing up some grape pop -> eventually burns off into flat cocoa-rubber

Genmaicha Crunch
unresponsive for the most part except a faint vital sign of black cherry / raisin
Mouthfeel   12.3 / 15
Texture: runs the gamut
Melt: medium-long
Flavor   44 / 50
Marañón Canyon
slow ambiguous start then a huge Fruit 'n Flower bloom -- gorgeous & enormous -- just powders the nose & mouth, so pronounced / frontal, potted in milk cocoa -> cherry blossoms

Camino Verde
sweet green cocoa ("fine sugar" plus the un-roasted downside of sheet-rock but yet some fudge-butter analogues too... mostly toward the fringes) -> straightens out & up some (not too much) to yeasty malted flour -> parting spice shot (vanilla-cinnamon)

Genmaicha Crunch
cocoa puffs with the stress on the rice like wild rice (the latter belonging to the grass family, as this presents rather 'grassy)', chocolate lending a supporting role 'til the back when it asserts with a flourish its muted fruit accents, now sublimated into cereal malt
Quality   17.7 / 20
Marañón Canyon
Peru Nac'l at a pitch & peak it never before reached.

Astute move…. Raaka lays the foundation with Fortunato 4 seeds then sprinkles the bar with Peru Nacional White Seeded Nibs from the same canyon. The All-Whites lack the anthocyanin pigment gene to impart a bitter-free supple flavor. Thus the Nibs at first amplify the Fruit 'n Flower FXs (& mainly the latter) prior to tamping them down.

A remarkable output for an un-roasted chocolate. Whatever one thinks of this cacáo type, its special qualities are indisputable except to the most jealously obstreperous.

Camino Verde
Raaka has a lot of balls to hang an 80% un-roasted bar on Camino Verde. Then again, hard to make a bad chocolate out of this estate. Now even "raw chocolate", usually the worst of the very bad, fails at this. Raaka tweeting out #sweetgreenchoc.

Genmaicha Crunch
The House of Raaka continues to employ the rather ill-starred Alto Bení cacáo from the CIAAB Co-op as a canvas for its imaginative works. First the hypnotic sorcery of its Bourbon Cask Aged bar, then the smokey Lapsang Souchong lap dance on tongues everywhere, & now this Genmaicha. A bit flat compared to those other 2. But easy for fun snacks -- 36% sugar content sees to that. Consider it popcorn replacement.

Capsule Summary: Raaka straddles that fine line between healthful & tasteful. “Raw”-ish yet gourmet-like. No other barsmith balances on that fence with such poise & finesse which accounts for continuing interest in every Raaka release.

These 3 newer ones of their self-anointed "virgin chocolate" line… huh, like these babes-in-the-cocoa-woods have never F-ed with chocolate before.

Reviewed March 10, 2015


Pin It on Pinterest