Saturday, September 24, 2011

Vosges Black Salt Caramel Bar


3oz (85g) bar
Ingredients: Cocoa mass, sugar, cocoa butter, organic cream, corn syrup, soy lecithin, water, vanilla, sea salt
11g sugar/43g serving (25.6% by wt.)

Corporate Info: Vosges is based in Chicago and produces a pretty wide variety of adventurously flavored bars and confections, among them the famous bacon chocolate. The last time I sampled a Vosges bar I was annoyed by the pretentious copy on the back of the box, and it's silly here too, but the website keeps the flowery text off the front page, and of course it's not as important as the chocolate! This filled bar just sounded like fun.

Appearance: Wide, thin, and flat, nicely molded, very smooth, medium-dark, a bit ruddy. I'm impressed such a thin bar contains a filling!

Smell: Not particularly unusual, but tangy and creamy.

Taste: Very nice. The caramel's flavor is rich, creamy, and deep but relatively subtle and surprisingly not too sweet; I personally might like it more toasted, but this is just a matter of taste, and it's well-made as it is. Texture-wise, the soft caramel oozes but fortunately doesn't all flow out like water, so I can take a chunk off without losing the entire filling. The 70% cacao chocolate is just tart, sweet, and complex enough to hold its own against the filling, neither dwarfing nor being dwarfed by the low-key caramel. I've almost forgotten the salt, which as part of the caramel isn't a standout ingredient but rather an integral flavoring element. There's a lot going on here, though you'll have to pay attention if you want to taste the nuances.

Conclusion: Vosges Black Salt Caramel Bar is balanced, not too sweet, and won't shout to be heard, but if you like this sort of thing, it's worth your money and effort.

2 comments:

  1. I think Vosges does good work with caramel in thin bars, like you point out. However, I've never yet purchased an unbroken Vosges bar, so that makes eating the caramel bars especially difficult and sticky. That said, despite the crap on the back of the box, I enjoy their products.

    Keeping in the caramel line, I love the Blood Orange Caramel bar (with hibiscus).

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  2. I was somewhat disappointed in the Calindia and bacon bars, but the caramel one was great, so maybe that's what I like in Vosges. I will definitely pick up the blood orange caramel bar the next time I see it.

    I think all of the Vosges I've found has been intact, but that shape really is quite delicate and their chocolate seems...soft, maybe? Especially when it's hollow! Best of luck in your Vosges travels.

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