Review: Scharffen Berger Las Islas
With as much emphasis as there is on single origin chocolate these days it’s nice to see a product like the one I’m gnawing on tonight: Scharffen Berger’s Las Islas. Rather than highlight a small region or single plantation they’ve created a special Caribbean blend with beans from Trinidad, Jamaica, and the Dominican Republic.
The bar itself is well formed and has a really attractive deep brown color with a little red in it. The aroma is strong and a little sharp with a hint of citrus on a grassy and slightly woody base with a little tobacco thrown in. Keeping with the citrus in the aroma the first touch to the tongue reveals a bright profile. The flavor quickly develops to a bright and fruity mix of orange and berries but it isn’t too sweet. There is something else offsetting the fruit, cutting the sweetness and adding a little astringency, and I can’t put my finger on a flavor. The nearest I can come up with is cider or grapes or wine – something with some tannins. It finishes smooth with the bright fruit fading to a little jam balanced with a nutty undertone. Even after it’s faded there is a lingering hint of fruit that just won’t go away.
Overall it’s a pretty good bar. Not one I’d be in the mood for on a regular basis, but a good bar no less. I’m going to call it an 7.75 out of 10 and something I’m glad I got to try.