Saturday, April 20, 2013

Theo 70% Nutcracker Brittle

3oz (84g) bar
Ingredients: Organic fair trade cocoa beans, oft. sugar, o. corn syrup, oft. cocoa butter, water sea salt, baking soda, o. almonds, o. hazelnuts, o. ground vanilla bean
12g sugar/42g serving (28.6% by wt.)

Corporate Info: (Copied from 12/15/12) I've written about Theo Chocolate many times, and in short, it's a great Seattle company making bean-to-bar chocolate and creative, often seasonal confections (you'll see more in-store than online) that are organic and fair trade. You can visit Theo's retail storeorder online, or find a selection of Theo's bars at upscale and health food stores nationwide. My only beef with Theo is that I tend to find its usual 70% dark chocolate base too sour as a match for flavorings, but that's a personal taste issue.

Today's Bar: 70% Nutcracker Brittle, another holiday bar that sounds like a slightly darker, non-milk, nutty version of last week's 62% salted toffee.

Appearance: Actually, compared to last week's, this is exactly what one might think: a little darker, with less white in the color and still a reddish, non-uniform base.

Smell: Really lovely--aromatic and beany/raw but not harsh.

Taste: First, the brittle is totally different from last week's salted butter toffee, more like tiny, crunchy nut pieces with just a hint of candy's crystalline texture. There's also not as much salt, which I think this could have used; the nut flavor is muted compared to the strong, sour and raw flavors of Theo's intense cacao. The most successful bites I get are those with larger brittle pieces, which stand out against the lower proportion of chocolate. 

Conclusion: Theo 70% Nutcracker Brittle is fine, but the nutty brittle's subtler flavors are dwarfed by the intense cacao.

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