Chocolate and Love

Chocolate always goes down well in the Fifi Friendly household.   I love it, my son goes for the dairy free option and my daughter goes for any kind of chocolate put in front of her…. invariably covering half her face in it as she eats it …  she is classy like that. So, with three chocolate lovers in the house and sweet toothed Grandad visiting for the weekend, what better time to test out some organic and Fairtrade chocolate bars from Chocolate and Love.

I am not sure where to start. First there is the lovely story as to why Chocolate and Love came about. This was when the owners had difficulty sourcing good quality organic chocolate after moving to an organic based diet. Secondly, there is the backbone of the company to be wholeheartedly organic, ethically run, buying ethically made produce and also having an environmentally friendly angle to everything they do. Thirdly, this award winning company works very closely with the Fairtrade certified Co-operatives of Peru, Panama and the Dominican Republic from whom they buy their cacao. In fact, on the back of each pack is a portrait picture of one of the Co-operative members. This is such a great and personal touch. Fourthly, I love the unique and stunning hand painted design of the packaging! It is no surprise why this alone has won awards. Finally (I could easily give another ten points here, but I am bursting to tell you about the taste), Chocolate and Love don’t mask the flavour of their chocolate with sugar, which makes for sublime tasting bars. Utterly luxurious, superbly presented and Swiss made chocolate.

Last night I was greeted by some grumpy faces when I told them that they could not have any of the chocolate until I took a photo of the bars in daylight. Recently, I have had an issue with buying products to review, getting excited about them, with the kids and me eating them before I have taken some pretty pictures. Never good! I was not going to let this happen with these Fairtrade chocolate bars.  This afternoon, the pictures were taken and no sooner had I shut the door to the garden than the tasters were queuing up to try the goods. That is a lie, Grandad didn’t queue up. He just sat quietly while my daughter ran between me and him dispensing chocolate.

Eventually,  I get to the bars. I feel like they need a drum roll.  There are 7 in the range, each with their own individual blend. On our “tasting table” (the desk from which I write the blog) are Filthy Rich, Sea Salt, Panama and Dark Milk. I was really drawn to the packaging of Sea Salt so that seemed like a good place to start.

Sea Salt is an exquisite blend of 55% chocolate from the Dominican Republic and Peru with caramel and sea salt. Wow, wow and wow.  I wanted this to taste good and it did not disappoint me in any way! It was the perfect mix of sweet and salty coupled with a satisfying crunch. This to me is heaven in a bar.

Panama is a high percentage chocolate with 80% minimum cocoa. Don’t let this number fool you as this is not like your average high percentage chocolate. It is smooth, decadently rich in flavour and anything but bitter.  This is beautiful. This is bean to bar as it should be. This is what chocolate should taste like. This is why Chocolate and Love are great at harnessing the use of top quality beans.

Dark Milk is a wonderfully creamy blend of 55% chocolate with the added crunch of cacao nibs. So good! This one was my daughters favourite.  I challenge you to try this one and not put on a face of enjoyment. This would be an impossible task. The flavour of this bar is guaranteed to put you in a place of delight. 
I love the name of Filthy Rich. This one definitely had more of a fruity aroma to it and as you will guess from its name, it has a rich and intense 71% cocoa content. To me, it had a slightly sharper taste than the other bars I tried, but believe you me, it melts on your tongue. 

It is fair to say I have had such an enjoyable couple of hours trying these out. We could have delayed our testing session but I couldn’t wait. Chocolate and Love make seriously great chocolate bars. No gimmicks, just top notch quality, with an even better ethos behind the bars. I can completely understand why they have been winning awards left, right and centre. Deservedly so. I think I have found my favourite chocolate company. There is a bar for everyone within this range. Unlike some brands who have one clear hero product,  Chocolate and Love have a hero range. Their bars went down an absolute treat in my house.

It is well past Valentine’s Day and I am still feeling a lot of love…  and so much love for Chocolate and Love…. awww! Definitely giving them a Fifi Friendly 5* award for their gluten free, gmo free and generally just AMAZING chocolate bars. This is quite possibly the best chocolate I have ever tried. I cannot urge you enough to try them. Go forth, visit Chocolate and Love, enjoy the range and let me know what you think. You can buy Chocolate and Love from a number of stores including Ocado, Harvey Nicols and Wholefoods.

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