Throw a Chocolate Tasting Party

Wednesday May 07 2008

Chocolate from around the world. Just like a wine tasting, a chocolate tasting has its own vocabulary. Remember, however, that this vocabulary is highly subjective; what one person tastes or smells won’t always be what everyone else notices. Keeping that in mind, here’s a basic country by country guide to origin-labelled chocolate:

  • Tanzania—Tangy and fruity with a lingering aftertaste.
  • Saint-Dominique (Caribbean)—Woodsier, sweet, with a slight citrusy tang.
  • Sao Tome and Principe (one of Africa’s smallest countries, located off the continent’s west coast)— "Coppeneur’s Sao Tome chocolate has some big and wonderful “in-your-face tannins,” says Mark Christian, an American chocolate expert and founder of the C-Spot chocolate newsletter.
  • Ecuador—"Brown sugar, peat, spice and roasted coffee", says Christian, of the Coppeneur bars from this country.
  • Indonesia—Coppeneur’s Java bars have “big caramel, simmering tea and smoky notes"
  • Madagascar - “Fun and bright", says Christian.
  • Venezuela—Look for sweet, delicate notes of fruit, nuts and honey in chocolate made from this country’s famous Criollo beans.

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