El Oro

by República del Cacao
Info Details
Country Ecuador   
Type Semi-Dark   (67%)
Strain Hybrid   (disputable Nacional)
Source Ecuador   
Flavor Fruits & Flowers   
Style Rustic      
El Oro province in Ecuador, where the cacáo in this bar grows, hails itself as the banana capital of the world. But like that other local legend of gold, El Dorado, this becomes buried treasure, unfortunately submerged under layers of talc.
Appearance   3.9 / 5
Color: brown, purple &, living up to its name, sungold
Surface: passport-stamp mold, backed by a wicked whorl of twisted snake head on the flipside
Temper: semi-buffed
Snap: limp
Aroma   6.1 / 10
double-trouble doubled for troubling quad: hydrocarbons, cheese, dessicated cocoa, paraffin; (aerates to cinnamon however)
Mouthfeel   12.2 / 15
Texture: softly similar to its base flavor - talc
Melt: bit accelerated
Flavor   40.3 / 50
fantastic start - baby banana goes off inside a cherry bomb w/ chocolate bang in its wake, followed by huge cinnamon cloud... the totality - banana spice bread -> settles over flowers like radioactive fallout as nagging & pervasive talcum powder -> mutates via goji berry into orange blossoms & bougainvilleas -> cherimoya (recalling cherry banana) -> Oreo fudge (the mash-up mix of prior bread & talc)
Quality   16.6 / 20
No chocolate maker puts greater focus on single attributes of their beans than República – here a huge banana sweetspot. In the processing chain between drying techniques & storage, however, mishandling is evident; a common problem causing underlying off-flavor. In this bar the relatively higher sugar content creolizes the carboard notes of its label mates into talcum here, as if the skins of the bean made it into the batch instead of winnowed & blown off. A shame really, because otherwise República makes sensationally flavor-specific chocolate. CBS (~1:1:1)


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