Box Chocolate Review

Comptoir du Cacao

Info Details
Country France   (Bazoches / Betz)
Style Classic      
lo
med
hi
CQ
Sweetness
Intensity
Complexity
Impact
Anyone experienced in the urban dating scene knows appearance can be deceiving & game-talk flagrantly mendacious. The rustic-looking route traveled here really tracks over a modern course with classic sensibility, deftly showcasing cacáo by employing different inclusions to highlight it, either thru contrast or complement, then labeling pieces with boldly scientific names, directly translated from the sensation: “crusties”, “crunchies”, “flakies”. Don’t be fooled: Comptoir knows where it’s going & what it’s doing. Takes the well-beaten path - whose potholes & ditches swallow up the strewn garbage of chocolate makers - & paves over it, bending direction a bit without ever veering on any wild detours.
Presentation   4.7 / 5
rustic; all sorts of cut shapes (circles, squares, clusters) in a bushel basket ripe for digging in
Aromas   5 / 5
heady potpourri of dusted cocoa, followed by milk chocolate, caramel, dried fruits & herbs
Textures/Melt   8.3 / 10
Shells: solid bar quality
Centers: inapplicable
Flavor   43.9 / 50
honest; bends tradition just enough to be unique, w/o getting eccentric
Quality   26.2 / 30
True & clear
Selections
Couverture: Pralus
Dark Crusties – crêpe dentelle (crusty crystals) of Dark Choc w/ candied orange; fine chocolate upfront, cut by orange, then finishes back chocolate – classic progression, plus incredible textural disintegration
Gianduja Crusties – more of the same textural madness but here hazelnuts hook-up w/ salted-butter caramel contrasted by honey-drenched Milk Choc, & together all flows toffee; sensational if sweet-sided
Palets – thin rounds w/ gentle heart of flaked praline; come in 4 varieties: Milk Hazelnut, Hazelnut-Pistachio, Hazelnut-Salted Butter Caramel, & Dark Hazelnut-Coffee; each of them soft killers in their own right
Crunchies – thin squares of various takes on 72% cacáo: simple Torrefied w/ Nibs rivals the major league bars of that percentage w/ stringent staying power; Carmelized Pecan comes in starkly dry, nut heavy, & rather un-carmelized; Brittany Biscuit Pieces – overly sweet crowd-getter; Praline Almond – just a tremendous throwdown
Cacao Péro – hypnotic cache of 72% laced w/ a) Sichuan Black Pepper & Rose – a Stendahl trip hits the aromatics on lacquered smoke & pepper ground soft upon flower petals... so subtle it’s sorcery; b) Ginger & Coffee – taming of two shrews
Fruit Paste Praline – virtually cacáo-free, just a direct transfer of dried fruit pulp; purely honest
Flaky Pralines – knows itself: wheat flakes confer a firm yet soft crunch consistency; classic wafers
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