Just when you thought a four ingredient Dark Chocolate Bar couldn’t be re-invented, Ithaca Fine Chocolates arrived on the scene with their Art Bars. This bittersweet dark chocolate is rich in cocoa liquor with a few hints of sweetness from the unrefined cane sugar. Though cocoa liquor does not in fact contain alcohol, we found the dark bars to have a very mild chocolate liqueur flavor. I must admit, once I got used to the initial shock of a less sweet and slightly liquor like dark, it was more indulgent and satisfying than I had anticipated. Many dark chocolates are rich in cocoa, but possess a very bitter almost flat taste. Less dark and semi-sweet chocolates typically have sugar as the first ingredient. As much as I do love these, they often lead to more cravings. Ithaca's superior blend of cocoa liquor, unrefined cane sugar, cocoa butter, and ground vanilla (yes, i said ground!) was rich and fulfilling. The first reaction of our one-bar-per-day chocoholic was “needs more sugar”. This bar is not for those who like their chocolate in mass quantity. Purists and samplers will enjoy the full-bodied flavor with a surprisingly sweet after taste. To be noted as well, the owners of Ithaca's Fine Chocolates have taken indulgent chocolate to the next level, by combining it with their passions for art, humanity, and the environment. It is unusual to see such pure certified organic ingredients in a chocolate bar. Yet even more exceptional is their Fair Trade certification, which guarantees rights for farmers and shuns the use of child labor. As an added touch, 10 percent of all profits are donated to programs supporting art and education in the community.
- Pros: Certified fair trade; Organic; Pure ingredients; Rich flavor blend; One of the few soy free bars; 10% of sales donated to art in education programs
- Cons: More rich in liquor than your average dark bar, not a flavor for everyone
- Dark Chocolate Purists Seeking a "Cocoa Liquor" Indulgence
- Consumers Interested in Supporting Socially Conscious Companies
Flavor: Pure Dark
We had very mixed reviews on this bar, as the somewhat bittersweet flavor was loved by some but not by others
Flavor: Dark w/ Coconut
The added coconut gave it a pleasing texture and melded nicely with the flavor. It brought one more taster over to the dark side.