I’ve seen many chocolate and coffee pairings in my time, from chocolate-covered espresso beans to chocolate bars with coffee grounds mixed in. Chocolate is a common flavouring in many espresso-spiked drinks produced by Starbucks, from the chilly mocha Frappuccino to the garden variety hot mocha.
But chocolate and tea? About the closest I’ve seen is the recent arrival of chocolate chai lattes, which are as much about the spices as they are about the tea.
So it was with great curiosity that I found a range of chocolate bars infused with tea produced by Davids Tea, a chain of tea shops that have spread like wildfire across much of Canada and down into some parts of the U.S. A friendly colleague gifted me a bar of Dark Chocolate with Hot Lips tea, and I enjoyed it. So it didn’t take much convincing for me to buy a bar of their Dark Chocolate with Cream of Earl Grey to sample for NEAROF! purposes.
The Pitch: “A creamy twist. With fine imported dark chocolate and our Cream of Earl Grey Tea, this sophisticated chocolate bar pairs the floral notes of bergamot with an unexpectedly creamy hint of vanilla bean. Made in partnership with a Montreal chocolatier.”
The Look: Understated. Foil logo on a brown patterned box. Inside, the bar is wrapped in thick foil plastic. The bar is divided into five pieces (kind of stupid, since the nutritional info is for a half bar), each sporting the DAVIDsTEA logo.
The Taste: Wonderfully aromatic. Lots of dark chocolate oomph with swirling sweet bergamot that’s filled the air surrounding NEAROF!’s official sampling sofa. The taste is fruity and very floral, with some peppery notes and vanilla sweetness. Lots of crunch from the tea, which also contains cornflowers and marigolds. The only downside is that the little bits of tea are lingering in my mouth, hanging around in my cheeks and teeth. Both the chocolate and the tea contribute their own fruity, aromatic character to the combined whole. Unique, and entirely pleasant.
RATINGS AND DETAILS
Cost: $5.50 for an 80 gram (2.8 oz) chocolate bar at Davids Tea in Calgary.
Value for cash money: Decent for a premium bar.
Availability: Davids Tea shops. They’re easy to find in Canada.
Nutrition?: Per half bar (40 grams): 220 calories, 13 grams of fat, 0 mg of sodium, 6 grams of fibre, 4 grams of protein. Also: holy iron! A whopping 45% daily value of iron, to be precise.
The verdict: If you love tea (and especially Earl Grey and its variants), this is absolutely worth trying. It’s satisfying enough that you don’t crave piece after piece. A little bit goes a long way.