Mast Brothers single origin dark chocolate bar – Papua New Guinea

Here’s the second of the three Mast Brothers single origin chocolate bars, the Papua New Guinea, that I picked up at my local fancy coffee shop, Cocoa Cinnamon. I reviewed the Belize last Friday, and I’ll review the Madagascar this Friday.

Its wrapper description: “After harvest, these beans are uniquely smoked. This post-fermentation process imparts incredible flavor; think hickory smoked bacon and aged scotch.”

This bar also snapped, but it broke more softly than did the Belize. It also had a thicker melt on the tongue.

It started off with a great depth of chocolate intensity and richness. As the bar melted, it got darker and even more complex, taking on a hint of maltiness as well.

Again, an incredible amount of flavor from just cacao and cane sugar, thanks to careful bean sourcing and smoking the beans after fermentation, I guess. Another ZOMG! Seeing a trend here?

Mast Brothers single origin dark chocolate bar – Belize

I’ve written about Mast Brothers Chocolate in several news posts on the blog, but this is my first time reviewing their wares. Mast Brothers is based in NYC, so I hadn’t been able to try them until now – thanks for carrying amazing chocolate bars, Cocoa Cinnamon!

I picked up three of their single origin bars: the Belize, the Madagascar, and the Papua New Guinea. Belize is up first.

The wrapper blurb: “From the Mayan jungles of southern Belize, this ground-breaking cooperative farms world-class, organic cacao. Notes of raisin, plum, and sarsaparilla.

This bar had the dullest surface look of the three bars that I tried. It broke with a sharp snap, and not always along its presegmented lines.

The texture of the bar was on the dry side. When I chewed it up, it felt like it had just lost its grittiness, and there was no tongue-coating melting feel. You can see the fine grit along the break in the image below.

The flavor of this bar was just incredible! A brightly fruity punch of raisin notes dominates the flavor profile and lingers throughout.

I was enthralled by how much flavor this bar brought from having only cacao and cane sugar on its ingredients list. A ZOMG!

Fruit Vines Bites – Strawberry and Cherry

I got these Fruit Vines Bites as free samples the day before I left for Shanghai. Now that I’m back and mostly no longer jet-lagged, I can get around to reviewing them!

Fruit Vines Bites are a new candy from the Red Vines folks that currently come in cherry and strawberry. They were little chunks of chewy fruit candy about 3/4 of a inch long and comprised of three stuck together ropes.

They were quite soft and easy to bite through, with a bit of a tendency to get stuck in the nooks and crannies of my teeth as I chomped them up. The lightly sweet fruity flavors intensely permeated the whole bite, and both had just a hint of a wheaty undertone.

I liked the cherry (maroon) better than the strawberry due to its darker, more rotund red fruit flavor profile. It just seemed a little more intensely flavored in its plummy cherry-ness, which I liked.

Strawberry (red) was lighter and brighter in its candied red fruit flavor, which also made it a little more plastic tasting to my tongue. Not bad, but not as good as the cherry.

An OM for the cherry and O for the strawberry.

Off to Shanghai + Fruit Vines Teaser

By the time this post has published, I’ll be well on my way to Shanghai, China for a neuroeconomics conference. I’ll keep an eye out for any new candies, though embarrassingly (but not surprisingly) enough, I still have candies from my trip to Shanghai last summer that I never reviewed.

Like these FruTips. They’ve been sitting on my desk, and I’ve been slowly eating my way through them because they’re delicious! I really need to write them up. I also should probably buy a new tube because I’m no longer sure that I have one of each flavor of FruTip – they really are good!

I also just got these review samples of these new Fruit Vines Bites from Red Vines. I’m usually meh on licorice type candies, but I like these! I’ve already eaten quite a few cherry ones. There will be a write-up of these when I get back.

See y’all in a little over a week!

Green Beer-flavored Jelly Bellies

St. Patrick’s Day is just around the corner. For those of you who may not be familiar, St. Patrick’s Day is a chance for to celebrate being Irish, even if they’re not actually Irish, and drink lots of green beer. Because… I’m not really sure why.

Jelly Belly recently came out with beer flavored beans (reviewed here), so clearly the next logical step was to dye the beans green for the holiday. If you visit the Jelly Belly Vistor/Tour Centers in California or Wisconsin on March 14th, you’ll be able to pick up your own boozy green beans.

That green and gold is a striking mix in those jewel tones, no?