Review: Chocolate Tree – Maya Mountain, Belize 75% (*****)

The Creator:

Finally some time at hands, I admired my kingdom. I rose from my throne and commanded: bring me a fine chocolate! My cat lifted its head with an annoyed expression, yawned and went back to sleep. So I had to walk to the cupboard myself to see what treasures remained to be discovered.

I found a bar by Chocolate Tree, a proud Scottish bean-to-bar chocolate maker. I’ve known about them since the time I started this website. Alastair Gower sent me his first samples so many years ago. Today, their bars can be found at many chocolate festivals and fine chocolate shops. Long gone are the pioneer days. Their wonderful packages look luxurious and inviting. Apart form a range of origin bars, Chocolate Tree also offers inspired flavored bars well worth to discover. If you travel to Edinburgh, you can visit their shop and experience their passion for chocolate. But don’t worry if you can’t make it all the way to Scotland, Chocolate Tree’s products can be found in lots of places by now.

Today we try their Maya Mountain bar, featuring Belizean cocoa. Right at the heart of Central America, it offers exciting cocoa beans to the chocolate makers around the world. Even though Cocoa was well known to the Mayans in the Pre-Columbian time, it only recently came back into the spotlight, due to the efforts of local growers aiming at higher quality for the small batch chocolate world.

The Bar:

The package oozes luxury. It is big and colorful. The dark theme with gold logo of Chocolate Tree only adds to the feel. In contrast to many other chocolate makers out there, Chocolate Tree keeps the info on the package to a minimum. Origin, percentage, ingredients are obviously there. A dash of info on the origin, stating the cocoa is a Criollo hybrid, can be found. But nothing more. No flavor profile to be found, so it is up to you to explore the bar.

Instead of on big 80g bar, you find two 40g bars in the package. A nice touch. You can open one bar while the other remains sealed for later consumption. The design is amazing. Two different patterns show birds in flight and the birds on the box. Definitely a custom made design I haven’t encountered before. Wonderful.


Bean: Criollo Hybrid

Origin: Belize

Maker: Chocolate Tree, Dunbar, Scotland

Price: received as a gift from family

Batch: Not mentioned

Harvest: Not mentioned

Color: Dark Mahogany with a reddish hue

Aroma: Warm wood, crunchy chocolate, fruity backdrop

Taste: Thick and lush, imminent chocolate flash. Do I sense some nuts there? Whoa a dark berry under stream swishes up and draws me in. pinpoint accurate dashes of acidity on the tip of the tongue. More chocolaty goodness comes forth. Please, don’t let it stop. Swirly fruits, brown sugar, toasted bread. Hazelnuts, the flavor changes to quickly to pinpoint it all. The swirl evaporates suddenly? The chocolate is gone… Coffee emerges, dry woods and a massive load of roasted hazelnuts take over in the after taste. Keeps on rolling and rolling, never gives the palate a rest. It is relentless. A Tropical flavored chocolate hazelnut extravaganza indeed! Just one more piece! I’m sure I will be able to detect even more flavors this time… I’m sure!

A spectacular piece of chocolate. Exciting, mature, adventurous and delivering a kick. The power of fine chocolate condensed in a single bar.

Final evaluation:

Visual appeal: 5/5

Aroma: 4/5

Melt and mouth feel: 5/5

Flavor profile : 5/5

Complexity: 5/5

Overall: 24/25 (*****)


Chocolate Tree

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