Boasting handcrafted, bean-to-bar chocolate that is made with only whole, organic, and fair trade ingredients (no soy lecithin or other additives in sight), I simply had to trial the dairy-free offerings from Videri Chocolate Factory.
The packaging of Videri dark chocolate bars is gorgeous! A silver box arrived adorned with ribbon and in perfect condition. Inside, an abundance of confetti protected and showcased 5 beautiful, sturdy boxes, each of which contained TWO full-size chocolate bars. Though I hated to disturb the snug foil wrapping, chocolate is meant for tasting!
With my trusty chocolate-tasting sidekick on hand, Caroline of Grateful Foodie, we sampled our way through five Videri dark chocolate bars (they do make one milk chocolate selection, at last check, which is not dairy-free).
Videri 60% Sea Salt Chocolate Bars
We both agreed that this is a very nice, top quality, smooth dark chocolate with nary a hint of bitterness. It tastes amazing when nibbled alone as a simple indulgence with the sea salt heightening the overall flavor. I am a huge sea salt + chocolate fan, so I was a little disappointed that there wasn’t more stand-out salt with each bite. Crystals sporadically dotted the underside, but didn’t seem to be dispersed throughout the bar. Nonetheless, it was a scrumptious treat.
Videri 60% Pink Peppercorn Chocolate Bars
Contrary to the sparse Sea Salt, the backside if this Videri dark chocolate bar is generously dotted with freshly cracked peppercorn for a decidedly grown-up and bold taste. Though both bars use Videri’s 60%, the overall taste is worlds apart. While I preferred the purity of the Sea Salt, Caroline was dazzled by the Pink Peppercorn. Always the entertainer, she said this would be her secret weapon to impress last minute guests. Caroline recommends serving this sophisticated flavor with rosé and sliced pear or apple.
Videri 70% Classic Dark Chocolate Bars
As smooth as the 60% with perhaps even more cocoa butter depth, we were both surprised by the complete lack of bitterness in the Videri 70%. This is a really pleasant dark chocolate that should be pleasing to most palates, and is really quite fulfilling. In fact, while tasting this variety, we noticed how thick each Videri chocolate bar is!
Videri 75% Dark Chocolate Bars
Caroline was hesitant to keep moving up the cacao latter, as she isn’t a dark, dark chocolate fan. Likewise, I usually stop at around 70% cacao, and do actually adore nibbling on semi-sweet. But this was perhaps one of the most mellow 75% cacao chocolate bars that either of us had tasted. It was just beginning to venture into that deep, slightly bitter characteristic of most dark chocolates, but was still quite luxurious.
Videri 90% Ecuadorian Dark Chocolate Bars
At this point, we both though, “Why not? The 75% was good, let’s go for the gusto and give the 90% a try”. I was in shock when Caroline proclaimed, “This is the only 90% chocolate I’ve ever liked!” Definitely deep and very, very dark, but this nearly pure Videri dark chocolate bar has many flavor nuances to keep things interesting and it wasn’t nearly as bitter as expected. It was still a little dark for my tastes, but Caroline was happy to take the bar home. “It’s screaming for some wine!”, she said.
Certifications: Though not certified, Videri Dark Chocolate does use mostly organic ingredients.
Dietary Notes: By ingredients, Videri Dark Chocolate Bars are dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, gluten-free, grain-free, nut-free, peanut-free, soy-free, vegan, and vegetarian. Nonetheless, read the ingredient statement and check with the company on their manufacturing processes for all varieties if potential allergen cross-contamination is an issue for you. Processes and labeling are subject to change at any time for any company / product.
For More Product Information: Visit the Videri website at www.viderichocolatefactory.com.