Notes on chocolate: I was so wrong about salt

Was it a mere week ago I was lauding chunky chocolate and disdainful of salt therein? This is why I thought it would be safe to buy some Marimba Peanut Thins (43% single-origin Venezuelan) as a present for my salted-peanut-loving, absent husband, and be sure the chocolate would remain unmolested until his return.

But at some point I decided to test it. The 43% creaminess and the peanut saltiness were a perfectly balanced seesaw of temptation, which saw me walking backwards, forwards and sideways for replenishment.

Too soon the wrapper was but a graveyard of crumbs and memories. There is also a potato chip version (actual crisps captured in chocolate), which I must never buy.

It’s important to contradict and surprise oneself. I have a certain disdain, or so I thought, for really flavourful 70% bars. I mean, be a plain bar and be proud of it or have proper extra, tangible bits.

All these hidden layers of flavours – notes – which reveal themselves on the tongue are altogether far too much like wine-tasting. But the Goodnow Farms Ucayali bar uses a font which reminded me of something in a Roald Dahl book and was a modest 55g. It’s a 70% single-origin bar, using small-batch beans from eastern Peru – it’s got it all going on.

Incredibly, it contains just three ingredients, but they work really hard and deliver so much I still remember where I was when I first tasted it: floored.

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