The Good: Good flavor, Exceptional ingredients, Good corporate ethics
The Bad: Expensive, Sea salt flavor takes a little longer to manifest than I'd like.
The Basics: My first experience with Green & Black's is overwhelmingly positive with their Pure Dark Chocolate Sea Salt chocolate bars, which are quite good!
I went on a trip recently and, as is the habit when I return, my wife and I went out shopping almost immediately upon my return. It's a weird pattern, but shopping together is one of the ways we bond and reconnect after I have been away and it helps that there is a local chain of discount stores we like with an ever-changing inventory. So, when we were out at one of those stores and she spied a pretty cool boxed set of a new-to-me premium chocolate, she put it in our cart and got it for me as a little "welcome home" gift. Last night, we broke into the first bar (we all need our Vitamin C, sometimes right before bed!) and it made me very excited to review it today. The first Green & Black bar from my wife's welcome home gift is the Green & Black's Pure Dark Chocolate Sea Salt chocolate bar and it was pretty wonderful!
My real concern with starting with the Green & Black's Pure Dark Chocolate Sea Salt chocolate bar was that I was worried that I might be starting with the most appealing and that it was all down hill from here. That remains to be seen, but the truth is, the Green & Black's Pure Dark Chocolate Sea Salt was quite good, despite the expense and the "slow burn" of the flavor - the sea salt flavoring does not hit right away. That makes the Green & Black's Pure Dark Chocolate Sea Salt an intriguing chocolate bar!
Green & Black's Pure Dark Chocolate Sea Salt chocolate bars are one and three-eights inch by one and five-eighths inch rectangles of chocolate that are about three-sixteenths of an inch thick and connected side by side and in rows, to form a bar of ten segments. Each bar comes unified in a foil wrapper. The foil-wrapped chocolate bar is sealed in a cardboard package.
Each chocolate bar is sold in a way that it is easy to segment and control portions. In this form, the 3.17 oz. bar, the chocolate bar represents two and a half servings. Each bar appears solid (the sea salt flakes are embedded, as opposed to acting like a filling) and is stamped with the Green & Black's logo.
Ease Of Preparation
These are candy, so preparing them is as simple as opening the cardboard and then opening the foil wrapper from around the actual chocolate. There is no grand secret to eating Green & Black's Pure Dark Chocolate Sea Salt chocolate bars.
The Green & Black's Pure Dark Chocolate Sea Salt bars feature an indistinct, but potent aroma. The chocolate smell that emanates from each bar and each segment is strong, but does not hint at all at the salt inside. Instead, this is a potent, dry cocoa-smelling chocolate bar that smells like the 70% cacao it is comprised of with no other aromas to it.
In the mouth, the Pure Dark Chocolate Sea Salt bars are dominated by the flavor of the dry, dark chocolate. As one who loves dark chocolate, I was very pleased by how dry and flavorful the dark chocolate was without being excessively bitter. The chocolate is hard and dry and does not instantly melt. It takes until the chocolate does start to melt away - or one masticates the chocolate - for the sea salt to ever manifest in the palate. When the salt comes into the flavor mix, it is in competition with the dry chocolate flavor. The blend is nice, but the salt never breaks out to become the dominant flavor and it always seems to take several seconds before that flavor manifests at all.
The Green & Black's Pure Dark Chocolate Sea Salt chocolate bar has a strong, dry, aftertaste that endures on the tongue in a noticeable way for at least five minutes after it is consumed. The aftertaste is not horrible, but it is noticeable.
These are candy, so they are not healthy, but the Green & Black's Pure Dark Chocolate Sea Salt chocolate bars are not anywhere near as bad as they could be. The primary ingredients are bittersweet chocolate and sea salt. There is nothing unpronounceable in these candies and all of the ingredients could be readily identified by me; this seems to be a delightfully simple chocolate bar.
A serving from the Green & Black's Pure Dark Chocolate Sea Salt chocolate bars is considered four rectangles from the overall bar, which is a ridiculous serving size for a bar that is segmented into ten pieces. From four squares, one takes in 210 calories, including 160 calories of fat. There are 70 mg of sodium and 2 grams protein, but almost no vitamins or minerals in these chocolate bars. There is a decent amount Iron (25% RDA) in each bar, but not other major nutrients. The biggest nutritional detraction in the Green & Black's Pure Dark Chocolate Sea Salt are the 19 grams of fat per serving and the 55% RDA of saturated fat that comes from the 11 grams of saturated fat!
These are not Vegan-compliant, nor are they recommended for anyone with a nut allergy as they are manufactured on equipment that processes milk and tree nuts. They are not specifically marked as kosher (I'm not sure why), but Green & Black's uses sustainable cocoa farming for their cocoa, which is pretty cool!
The bars of these Green & Black's Pure Dark Chocolate Sea Salt chocolate bars remain fresh for quite some time. The bars we picked up two days ago had an expiration date of October 14, 2017, though they will certainly not last that long as I will have consumed mine well before then! One assumes that if they are kept in a cool, dry environment they will not melt or go bad. It is hard to imagine just what it would take for these to go bad outside melting and refreezing.
As for cleanup, just throw the packaging away in socially appropriate places, as opposed to litter and you're done! Outside that, there is no real cleanup needed, unless one is eating them in a hot environment. In that case, it is likely one would need to wash their hands, though these bars do not melt as easily as less-expensive chocolates. When this chocolate melts into most fabrics, it will stain.
Green & Black's Pure Dark Chocolate Sea Salt chocolate bars are quite good, even if the sea salt flavor is not nearly as strong as I might like, giving a more delayed flavor than a primary one.
For other chocolate reviews, please check out:
Brookside Chocolate Mango Coconut Crisp Dark Chocolate Bar
Coffee Thins Espresso chocolate squares
Ghirardelli Chocolate Squares Milk Chocolate Peppermint Brownie chocolate squares
For other chocolate reviews, please visit my Chocolate Review Index Page for an organized listing!
© 2017 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.