Unfortunately, what you’re paying for isn’t better chocolate, ingredients or expert making, but exorbitantly high import duties and transportation costs. Most foreign chocolates available in India are considered strictly mediocre in their home countries. With our chocolate, you’re paying for top drawer stuff – fine flavour cocoa beans, ‘Honest Ingredients’ and expertise.
Powdered dried dates (or dates sugar) is relatively unprocessed and has 70% sugar in it alongwith fiber and minerals. To make chocolate, dates sugar is heavily pulverized alongwith cocoa beans. Due to this heavy processing, all the fibre and the cellular structure of dates sugar disintegrate, thereby releasing all the sugar into the chocolate. When this dates sweetened chocolate is eaten, the free sugar from dates causes blood sugar spike exactly like added sugar.
Henceforth, if some naughty marketer tries to sell dates chocolate to you claiming it has no added sugar, tell them you would go for whole dates instead!
At the 2021 International Chocolate Awards, of the 35 Golds, not one was won by a Belgian or Swiss chocolate maker! Conventionally, the Swiss and Belgians have been known for chocolate - thanks to their marketing prowess. However, just like in the wine industry, newer regions are emerging as producers of exceptional chocolate. So the next time you buy a premium chocolate, pay more attention to the product and the maker, than to the country it was made in.
That used to be the case in an era when a Rs 10 chocolate bar was a luxury for most in India. Couverture only means that the chocolate contains cocoa butter and no vegetable oil. It totally ignores the quality of cocoa beans that the chocolate is made from. Most coverture chocolates are made from average quality cocoa beans and hence do not have the flavor complexity of a farm to bar chocolate. Careful harvesting, fermentation and drying of cocoa beans makes for a chocolate full of character owing to its flavor complexity and depth.
That’s actually wholly untrue. It’s only dark chocolate that’s made from poor quality cocoa beans that is bitter. We farm and process our cocoa beans with great scrutiny, so our fine flavour cocoa beans are way less bitter and instead have complex flavours that add character to our chocolate. Pay close attention and you’ll discover fruity, floral or spicy undertones while savouring Paul and Mike dark chocolates.
Africa is indeed the largest producer of cocoa beans and supplies to some of the largest mass chocolate makers. Naturally then, Africa has come to be marketed by them as the source of best cocoa beans. In reality, all cocoa producing regions produce varying qualities of cocoa beans, and so does Africa. But don’t take our word for it – how about the fact that out of the 18 winners at the 2019 Cocoa of Excellence Awards, only 4 were from Africa! The quality of cocoa is determined less by where it is grown, and more by how it is grown, harvested and processed. And that, ladies and gentlemen, is what makes a chocolate average, better or simply the best.
Nearly 50% of a cocoa bean is cocoa butter which gives chocolate its rich mouthfeel. When this cocoa butter is extracted from the bean, what’s left behind is inferior cocoa powder/solids. The cocoa percentage of a bar merely states what amount of its contents comes from cocoa beans – it does not indicate whether it is cocoa beans or inferior cocoa powder/solids. So, a 60% cocoa chocolate made from 60% cocoa beans is far superior to the one made from 60% cocoa powder/solids.
Clickbait journalism has long plagued our newsfeeds, and the scare about dark chocolate's high lead and cadmium content is no exception. These claims are based on California's Prop 65 benchmark, which sets daily limits so low that even a daily serving of rice and lentils would exceed them. This benchmark fails the test of reasonableness, and its use to demonize dark chocolate is pure nonsense.
Fortunately, FDA has set more scientifically sound limits and all dark chocolates from reputable brands satisfy these. So, let's celebrate the bittersweet joy of dark chocolate without the bitter lies.