Thursday, August 27, 2009
Ghana White Chocolate
I've never thought much about white chocolate and how or why it was invented. I only know that my earliest experiences with it were the white chocolate Easter bunnies in my Easter basket. Sure, they looked cool because who doesn't like a white rabbit, but they were always the last thing I wanted to eat.
A little research on Wikipedia reveals that, like processed cheese, white chocolate was created to use up a byproduct from another product's manufacturing process. With cheese, it was using up whey. With white chocolate, it started as a way to use up excess cocoa butter. Given that cocoa butter is now a prized part of chocolate production, I have to wonder what the incentive is these days to produce white chocolate. I guess some people just enjoy it. For the most part, I'm not one of them.
I am a fan, however, of Ghana milk chocolate so I wanted to give this variation a try. The bar is firmer than a milk chocolate bar and has a harder snap. When you put it in your mouth, it also does not melt easily and seems less decadent and silky. The bar smells like vanilla and the sort of white chocolate scent that I associated with the aforementioned white chocolate Easter bunnies that took up residence in my childhood basket.
The first taste is of very mild vanilla followed by a tiny hint of lemon. It's a little malty and has a somewhat sour aftertaste. Surprisingly, it's not super sweet and this was a very pleasant surprise. It has good sweetness balance, but weak flavor overall. In every way, it's a very subtle bar.
The bar is 45 grams (1.5 oz.) and has 279 calories. Cocoa butter is the second ingredient whereas it tends to be the third, fourth or fifth ingredient in regular milk chocolate bars. Mainly cocoa solids are missing from the white chocolate bar. Oddly, this bar has Vitamin E added to it and I wonder if that might be part of what adds a little sour aftertaste.
This is by far one of the best white chocolate bars I've ever had. I wish that was saying more, but the flavor is simply too subtle for this bar to appeal to me, so I won't buy it again. I have a feeling that fans of white chocolate might find that the bar isn't sweet enough for them, but I certainly would encourage white chocolate lovers to sample this. For those who are relatively indifferent to white chocolate, this is unlikely to win them over.