Saturday, June 2, 2012

Fearless 70% Sweet & Hot Hibiscus Ginger

 
2oz (56.7g) bar
Ingredients: Organic raw cacao, o. raw cane sugar, o. hibiscus flower, o. ginger
7g sugar/28.35g serving (24.7% by wt.)

Corporate Info: Fearless is totally new to me, but I spied its frankly adorable boxes (tiny elephant! lightning! cloud/bite out of corner! friendly font!) on sale and bought a couple boxes. The company was apparently founded in 2006 in California, uses recycled paper for the outer boxes, and makes bean-to-bar chocolate with organic ingredients and direct trade cacao from specific plantations in Brazil, with a special focus on raw cacao. All of this may or may not mean anything to you, but I think I can safely say that Fearless is full of good intentions, part of what I'm seeing as a young cohort trying to bring chocolate into the modern age more thoughtfully, with an eye toward (or blatant focus on) sustainability and treating growers well. The small-company, bean-to-bar model is one way of doing it (contrast with Divine, for example), and it's a fine option. Good for them. Oh, and Fearless currently produces only five items, a plain 75% bar and four 70% bars with interesting flavor combos.

Today's Bar: The third in a run of ginger bars, this one also contains hibiscus, which in my experience is usually quite tart. The raw cacao also promises to be a flavor wild card.

Appearance: Fearless has its looks down, making raw/organic/direct trade accessibly cute. In addition to a matte, orangey bar with a touch of grey (mostly the washed-out effect of the matte texture), this bar has the tiny elephant, stars on each section, and a replica of the scalloped “bite” taken out of the top right corner. This is a rare case of meaningfully good product design.

Smell: Surprisingly mild, with a beany-tart “real chocolate” aroma (similar to last week's) and some super-integrated gingery spice. Not sure about the hibiscus.

Taste: Spicy ginger shows up immediately, even before I begin chewing, then a sour combo that I think comes from both the chocolate (beany) and the hibiscus (sharp). The texture is quite smooth and somewhat thick, which also means no crystallized ginger pieces. I don't know if I'm tasting ginger juice or ground ginger, but either way it's thin and spicy, not at all candied, but also not overwhelming or hot. I'm not sure that raw, super close-to-the-tree chocolate is my favorite kind, but it works very well with the fresh tasting ginger and a hibiscus flavor that enhances the cacao's raw, sour highs. A surprising success.

Conclusion: Fearless 70% Sweet & Hot Hibiscus Ginger makes raw cacao and fresh ginger and hibiscus friendly by controlling potentially harsh flavors and presenting an outstanding appearance.

2 comments:

  1. I'd love to try this one. I had the Exploding Coconuts(!) bar last year, and enjoyed it thoroughly:) I'm super curious about the hibiscus.

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  2. Now I want to try that one too!

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