Harvest 2015

Variety: Heirloom Nacional

Ingredients: 80.5% Cacao beans, cane sugar

Nose: Citrusy pine, a touch of mint.

Palate: Opens with sweet resinous wood, coconut, mint and lemon peel, stewed dates, and fresh pine on the back-end.

Finish: Coffee, dates, and pine.

Palo Santo wood, renowned for its fragrant essential oils, is actually native to the forests of coastal Ecuador. It grows wild in the very same province in which To’ak was born. Our most fragrant edition of To’ak chocolate aged with this powerfully aromatic wood has a profoundly exotic flavor profile, to say the least...

Shiny and homogeneous on the surface

Rich Brown color ******

Aroma: coconut, citrus pine, sweet soft peppermint candy, a hint of golden mimosa

Mouthfeel: warm

Texture: it melts slowly yet smoothly with a creamy finish

Snap: hard and sharp on the edges

Structure/Hardness: *****

Texture: **** (i expected more silkiness)

Roundness: ********

Sweetness: ****

Aromatic finesse: ********


Astringency: *****

Bitterness: ***

Intensity: *****

Complexity: ********

Length/Aftertaste: **********

Flavor profile: sweet resinous wood opening followed by fresh coconut bites flavor delighted by a sophisticated touch of Italian summer drink "Latte e menta" that consists of chilled milk mixed with mint syrup, date paste, peppermint herbaceous cooling spiciness (peppery indeed), citrusy lemon peel aromatic bitterness in the background interrelated with the pine crispiness. Appreciable rooibos tea mouthfeel in the end with a pine citrus tang and no bitterness. Rooibos tea is slightly nutty, with a touch of earthy and woody flavors. It is also less grassy and tannic, smoother, and sweeter compared to other types of tea. Long-lasting aromatic wood aftertaste influencing your perception of taste for hours.

Chocolate is a very particular product that conveys identity and a whole way of life, so let us not move too rapidly towards the practice of 'eating' chocolates. To`ak used the most aromatic woods in the world creating a soothing aromatherapy tasting experience with a clean, relaxing, harmonious, and reinvigorating effect. A total blast for your mood!

The practice of dry-farming maintaining and selecting the best cacao trees, while adopting innovative production techniques to the local conditions, has resulted in a differentiated and esteemed product for the "tree-to-bar" chocolate maker. I think the Palo Santo Aged dark chocolate is one of the best viable realizations for the Aging process given the excellent definition and "simulation" of picking the "authentic tasting notes" of the chosen vessel.

Pairing recommendations: Añejo tequila (eg. Don Julio) and Zacapa Rum 23 are To`ak top choices. Generally pairs well with a broad range of whiskies (from Speyside and Islay to American Rye and Japanese), of which some of our favorites include Aberlour 16 Year, “The Chita” single grain whisky from Suntory, and Laphroaig’s Four Wood. As always, Pedro Ximenez Sherry never fails.

Values expressed in stars from 1 to 8. If the bar is extraordinarily close to perfection, I can go up to 10.