Friday, January 11, 2013

Leaning More Toward The Average Than Embodying The Extraordinary, Ghirardelli Peppermint Bark With Dark Chocolate Is Fine (Nothing More).

The Good: Tastes delicious, Smooth, Nothing truly bad in it.
The Bad: Not the most minty flavor, Not exactly nutritious.
The Basics: Ghirardelli Peppermint Bark With Dark Chocolate is a limited edition flavor of chocolate square that is good, but more satisfying to fans of dark chocolate than mint (or peppermint bark).

My wife knows me incredibly well. So, despite being underwhelmed a few years back by the Ghirardelli Peppermint Bark (reviewed here!), when the holiday season ended this year and she spied a bag of Ghirardelli Peppermint Bark With Dark Chocolate, she picked it up for me. And, to be fair, her instinct was good; the Ghirardelli Peppermint Bark With Dark Chocolate chocolate squares are more flavorful than the original (white) chocolate peppermint bark and that is almost enough to make them worth picking up, though I think this is a “wait until clearance” candy.


Ghirardelli Peppermint Bark With Dark Chocolate chocolate squares are one and a half inch squares of chocolate that are about three-eighths inches thick. Each of the squares comes individually wrapped in a red, white and brown wrapper. It is worth noting that while I usually rail against the environmental impact of such things, it is hard to imagine Ghirardelli chocolate squares not wrapped. This keeps each one clean, unmelted and intact.

Each chocolate square is a seamless square that is essentially a chocolate patty which has dark chocolate on the bottom and white chocolate with peppermint in it on the upper two-thirds of the confection. In this form, the 4.45 oz. bag, the individually-wrapped chocolate squares are packaged together in a thick foil paper bag. This size has eleven squares and the thick foil paper bag does little to protect the squares. The bag is not resealable, though this matters very little considering that the chocolate squares do not go bad as they are individually wrapped.

One of these bags, even with only eleven squares, tends to run in the $5.00 range on sale or at discount stores.

Ease Of Preparation

These are candy, so preparing them is as simple as opening the bag and then opening one of the plastic wrappers around the actual chocolate square one wishes to eat. There is no grand secret to eating Ghirardelli Peppermint Bark With Dark Chocolate chocolate squares. I have, on occasion, garnished an ice cream sundae with one of these big, yummy squares, but that is hardly more complicated than sticking a chocolate into the softest section of a scoop of ice cream one can find!


The Peppermint Bark With Dark Chocolate Ghirardelli squares smell mostly like chocolate, with almost no hint of the peppermint flavor in their bouquet.

The Peppermint Bark With Dark Chocolate is mostly flavored by the dark chocolate, though as the white chocolate around the actual mint candy pieces melts away, the peppermint flavor asserts itself. Only after the waxy white chocolate melts away does this candy become a true blending of dark and creamy chocolate with a pleasant, vibrant mint kick to it.

The dry aftertaste of the dark chocolate lingers in the mouth well after the mint zing of the hard candy flecks in the white chocolate fades.


Well, these are candy, so it is tough to look at these for something nutritious and then blame them for not being healthy. Ghirardelli chocolate squares are surprisingly good, though, which is probably why they are so expensive. The primary ingredients are sugar, unsweetened chocolate, and cocoa butter. Still, there is nothing unpronouncable in these candies and outside the red #40 lake coloring.

A serving of the Ghirardelli Peppermint Bark With Dark Chocolate chocolate squares is considered three squares. From three squares, one takes in 180 calories, 120 of those calories being from fat. There is a subtle amount (1% each) of cholesterol and sodium, as well as trace amounts of Iron (6%) and Calcium (8%).

Honestly, these are candy and anyone looking to them for actual nutrition needs to get a reality check. These are not Vegan-compliant, nor are they recommended for anyone with a nut allergy as they are produced on the same equipment that peanuts and tree nuts pass over. They are, however, kosher.


The bags of these Ghirardelli Peppermint Bark With Dark Chocolate chocolate squares remain fresh for quite some time. Our bag, bought in late December 2012, had an August 31, 2013 expiration date. Given that it is chocolate, one assumes that if they are kept in a cool, dry environment they will not melt or go bad. Given that they are individually wrapped in a very sealed package, it is hard to imagine just what it would take for these to go bad outside melting and refreezing.

As for cleanup, I applaud those who actually throw the wrappers away in socially appropriate places, as opposed to litter. 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. If these chocolate squares melt into most fabrics, they will stain. Getting them to melt, though, is quite a task.


Ghirardelli Peppermint Bark With Dark Chocolate is more chocolatey with an insinuation of mint than a true mint lover will want, but as a once a year treat, it is pleasant enough to recommend a bag, especially if you can find it on clearance!

For other Ghirardelli chocolate squares reviews, please check out:
60% Cacao
Ghirardelli Milk Chocolate with Caramel
Milk Chocolate with peanut butter filling


For other food and drink reviews, please visit my Food Review Index Page for an organized listing!

© 2013 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.
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