Potomac. Until a year ago, this name would mainly remind me of a river in Washington America. Today it is a name of a chocolate maker who’s products I was dying to try! I was very excited do discover some of their bars in a package I received recently. Made from nothing but the bare essentials, cocoa and organic cane sugar, the people behind Potomac go back to the very basics. No vanilla, no emulsifiers, nothing which may modify the original taste of the delicate cocoa used. The chocolate is handcrafted in Woodbridge, DC area.
The key word to Potomac is minimalism. The wrapper of the bar shows a fish figure against a pale green back ground. Noted in a big, yet stylish font are the percentage, origin and place of production. Turn it around and you”ll get tasting notes promising lots of fruits and a little explanation on the origin. The wrapper hugs a cellophane blister protecting a nice 50g bar. No thrills, just neat rectangular scored pieces of dark chocolate.
This particular bar is made from Peruvian cocoa grown in the Amazonian highlands. Peru can turn many ways, as I noticed in earlier tastings. It can yield dark earthy bars or intense fruity ones. Let’s discover if the taste follows the indications on the package.
Origin: San Martin, Peru
Produced: Potomac Chocolate – Woodbridge, VA – USA
Price: gift by Annmarie Kostyk
I have to be honest, the appearance of the bar shows some bloom due to the transportation that took an awful long time to arrive at my doorstep. But let us not get fooled by this.
Color: Dark woody brown, nearing black.
Aroma: Sweet dried fruits and earthy tones – a dark profile with dried grass and a touch of raw cocoa,
Taste: When the first layer of molten chocolate is released on the tongue, a whiff of roasted nuts and massive amounts of luscious tropical flavors emerge, including ripe banana and papaya. Sweet and savory. The bar taste very sweet for a 70%. A gentle coffee tone under the main aroma keeps it from being too sweet. Later on, hints of yellow raisins and pear appear. The fruit tones dominate the flavor during the entire melt. The chocolate has a high persistence to the melt and is a little drier compared to mean other bars, without being distracting. If anything at all, it forces you to invest a little more time and allows you to fully taste the chocolate. The general flavor is very rich and keeps the fruits flowing without major mood swings. The end of the melt is marked by a dash of smoky flavors gliding over to the aftertaste. A roasted nut aroma pops up and remains lingering for an extended time combined with the last coffee notes.
My two year old boy knows very well what will be going on when he sees my chocolate box appear and this time I had an especially hard time convincing him he had enough. He just came back and back for more. And you know children are brutally honest!
It comes as no surprise to discover this bar has been rewarded the silver medal by the Academy Of Chocolate in 2013.