Unboxing & Tasting December 2016 Chococurb Classic Box + Promo Code

[ products were received complementary for review purposes. All opinions are my own and are unbiased. ]

I receive chocolates in my Yogi Surprise Boxes and Kloverboxes and I do love my chocolate.  In fact, my parents had to hide chocolate from me when I was a small kid cause I would just eat it.  I once tasted raw liver because it looked like chocolate pudding (fact: raw liver does not taste like chocolate pudding).  So, when Chococurb asked me if I would like to try their Classic box, full of fancy, artisan chocolates, I said no.  NOT!  Of course I said yes!  I am not stupid!  Chococurb is an online store and subscription service, offering artisan-crafted, organic gourmet chocolates.   Thru their subscriptions, they offer a chocolate discovery experience.

  • Chococurb nano: Get a bite-size assortment of 5 gourmet, premium chocolate items each month. Starting at just $10/month.
  • Chococurb mini: Get a personalized assortment of 3 gourmet, premium chocolate items each month.  Starting at just $20/month.
  • Chococurb classic: Get a personalized assortment of 5-7 gourmet, premium chocolate items each month.  Starting at just $35/month.

Mini and Classic are personalized ~ you can state your preferences with chocolate (white, milk, dark) and what you like in chocolates (fruit, alcohol, spices, nuts, coffee, and so on) in your Chococurb profile.   You can save 10% at Chococurb by using promo code UNBOXINGBEAUTY ~ expires 1/31/2017 .

Since I received this Classic box complementary, I did not get to personalize my selections.  I did try out a few of these before posting this review, so the ones that I did taste, I will give you my impressions!  This is a lot of chocolate for the month, so I don’t want to eat it all in one sitting!  I love that Chococurb has the expiration dates (best by) on the bar, so you know when to best eat them by. 

Since boxes are normally customized, it makes sense that there is no informational card, as your box will be personalized to your tastes.

Ethereal Confections Handcrafted Inclusion Chocolate Bar 66% Cacao topped with Crushed Candy Cane Bits and  Cocoa Nibs  Just in time for the holidays!  This must be a seasonal chocolate bar, as I do not see it on Ethereal ‘s website.  Made with all natural ingredients with no preservatives, artificial colors or flavors, this even gets its candy cane coloring from beet juice!  This organic dark chocolate bar gets its peppermint taste from peppermint oil and is topped with crushed candy canes and cocoa nibs.  This does sound a lot like their Holiday Candy Cane Bark.  2.25 oz RV $7.50

About Ethereal Confections: Ethereal Confections is a collaboration between sisters-in-law Mary and Sara Ervin. A shared passion for chocolate and a quest for perfection led them to begin experimenting with making chocolate from the bean. After much trial and error, Ethereal Confections, which handcrafts its unique products in Woodstock, Illinois, was launched. Each bar is crafted using organic ingredients and without preservatives. 

Ingredients: Chocolate* (Cocoa Beans*, Cane Sugar*, Cocoa Butter*), Candy Canes* (Brown Rice Syrup*, Dried Cane Syrup*, Beet Juice, Peppermint Oil),  Cocoa Nibs* *Organic Ingredient 

Forte Artisan Chocolates Milk Chocolate Love I have to admit, I love milk chocolate over dark. Sorry!  This was the first chocolate that I tore into and tried.  The hand crafted chocolate bar is in an amazing design ~ it is split into squares with alternating squares being built up on a tier. It is a very 3-diminesional bar of chocolate ~ plus it has beautiful floral designs etched on the front.  The taste is wonderful ~ Forte uses a extra high percentage of cocoa butter, which makes this smooth, sweet and silky.  Just wonderful ~ if you thought a plain milk chocolate bar was meh, you haven’t tried Forte yet.  Love has won two awards ~ USA Silver 2013 International Chocolate Award and Best Milk Chocolate Bar 2011 Seattle Luxury Chocolate Salon.   1.58 oz RV $8.50

About Forte Artisan Chocolates: Forte Chocolates is nestled between the Skagit Valley tulip fields and Cascade Mountains in Mount Vernon, WA. Master Chocolatier Karen Neugebauer continues to wow customers with both traditional chocolate flavors and cutting-edge creations. Believing in the philosophy that to celebrate chocolate is to celebrate life, Karen and her team choose to follow the artisan mindset. Rather than manufacturing large quantities, Forte Chocolates are crafted entirely by hand.  Stunning flavor combinations by are created by blending chocolates with the finest ingredients available in the marketplace, including savory elements such as organic herbs, honeys, and spices.

Ingredients: Cocoa butter, whole milk powder, sugar, cocoa mass, brown sugar, natural vanilla, GMO free soy lecithin (emulsifier), barley malt extract

Taza Chocolate Stone Ground Coconut Crunch I love Taza Chocolates! They are right here in Somerville, MA ~ nearby ~ and their chocolates are a feature in many coffee shops around here, as well as Whole foods.  This marries a couple of favorite flavors and a texture that I love ~ chocolate, coconut with rice crispy crunch!  This chocolate bar has 65% organic stone grown dark chocolate and organic coconut.   I can really smell the coconut when I opened up the item ~ it is very strong!  The sweetness of the coconut works really well with the bitter sweetness of the dark chocolate and the crispy rice really adds some great texture and crunch.  Two thumbs up!  They are gluten free, vegan and are non-GMO project verified and pratice fair trade. Taza cacao beans are grown in traditional Mexican stone mills (molinos) and they create a flavor that is robust and rich ~ and since it is hand ground, the texture is slightly gritty, which really brings out the taste.  .85 oz  RV $1.45

About Taza Chocolates: At their factory in Somerville, MA, Taza stone-grinds cacao into minimally processed chocolate with a bold flavor and texture. Inspired by the rustic chocolate he came across in Oaxaca, founder Alex Whitmore learned how to hand-carve granite mill stones in order to create his new style of American chocolate. With their Direct Trade Cacao Certification Program, Taza is able to ensure that their cacao is coming only from certified organic farms where the rights of the workers and the environment are respected.

Ingredients: Cacao beans*, cane sugar*, cocoa butter*, coconut*, brown rice crisps* (brown rice flour*, sugar*, molasses*, salt, calcium carbonate), coconut flavor*, vanilla beans*. * Ingredients are certified organic.

 

Chocolat Moderne New York Dark Street Nuts Chocolate Bar They also make a milk chocolate version of this bar!  This is made with Valrhona dark chocolate (62% cacao), sea salt and a caramelized mix of almonds, cashews and peanuts.  This is a take on the famous Nuts 4 Nuts vendors that sell caramelized nuts on the streets of NY, only adding the decadent rich taste of chocolate.  3.5 oz  RV $9.00

About Chocolate Moderne: Chocolate Modern believes that chocolate will always be in style – especially luxe gourmet chocolate. For over 10 years, in New York, they’ve been striving to outdo themselves with unique flavor profiles while honoring millennia old traditions that they’ve come to know and love.

Ingredients: dark chocolate (cocoa beans, sugar, cocoa butter, soya lecithin, natural vanilla), cane sugar, whole roasted almonds, cashews, peanuts, sea salt

Evolve Regional Bounty Pacific Northwest Cherry Coffee Hazelnut & Blueberry Cardamom Truffles That is a mouthful! These are yummy truffles that did have a bit of transport issue. One of the truffles’ outer shell cracked and broke apart, but hey, that was the one I ate first!! These dark chocolate truffles have a moist dense chocolate ganache filling and WOW. I don’t know about the coffee, hazelnut and cardamom, but these are a berry explosion in my mouth ~ I can really taste the cherries and blueberries in this rich truffles. I really like these a lot!  2 truffles 1.2 oz RV $6.00

About Evolve: Evolve Truffles is a collaboration between a chef with over 20 years of experience in the industry and a gourmet home cook/foodie. Made in Bellingham, WA, each truffle flavor is inspired by life experiences and crafted using fresh, local ingredients.

Description: Five PACIFIC NW infused artisan truffles, sourcing locally roasted coffee, nuts, smoked sea salt, fresh berries & fruits…“hometown bounty”. 

Ingredients: 85% Chocolate*(cocoa beans, cocoa butter, vanilla), cream, blueberries*, cherries*, coffee*, hazelnuts, cardamom*, cane sugar*, kosher salt  *organic

 

TCHO Milk Chocolate + Blue Bottle Coffee “Mokaccino” I will admit I am a mocha freak. This little tiny square of coffee infused 39% cacao milk chocolate was my favorite of  all of the chocolates. This really had a lovely deep coffee with smooth milk chocolate taste ~ I wanted more of these, seriously. Like a whole bar of them. This was so damn good and it was named the Best Flavored Milk Chocolate in America by the International Chocolate Awards (Gold medal winner in 2015).  I also love the design on the chocolate, it reminds me of dragon scales.  TCHO is pronounced “choh”, with the “T” being silent.   .28 oz RV 43 cents.

About TCHO: TCHO is New American Chocolate located in Berkeley, CA. A new kind of chocolate company for a new generation of chocolate enthusiasts!

Description: Warm, roasted nuttiness and complex dried fruit notes from freshly roasted Blue Bottle coffee blend seamlessly with the dense caramel and cocoa notes in our Serious Milk chocolate to create our instant classic: Mokaccino.

Ingredients: cane sugar*, cacao beans *^, cocoa butter*^, whole milk powder*, non fat milk powder*, coffee beans*, soy lecithin*, vanilla beans*  *organic ^Fair Trade Certified by Fair Trade USA 44% Fair Trade Certified ingredients

 

I really enjoyed tasting the different chocolates and my favorites, alas, were the smaller bars!! haha.  This box would go for $35.00 as it is the Classic and the retail value is less than $33.00 ~ however, as this is an artisan chocolate discovery service, handmade in small batches from all over the USA, I would say that you cannot expect a huge retail value on this. You should expect to get about the same price you paid for it. If you had purchased these chocolates online, you would also have to account for shipping costs as well, so I factored that into the $35.00 price tag. For a personalized, custom box of gourmet, freshly made chocolates, I think this is worth that price tag.  That said, I wish they would have added a few more of the smaller bars ~ especially the TCHO mocha chocolate.  It is less than 50 cents and a few more might have been very nice to have, just to get it closer to the $35.00 price tag.   You can save 10% at Chococurb by using promo code  UNBOXINGBEAUTY ~ expires 1/31/2017

Many thanks to Chococurb for sending me this box to review!  I still have a few unopened bars to try, but I think that this was a nice, well rounded box of chocolates.  Do you subscribe to Chococurb?  What did you get in your box this month?

[ descriptions in italics from linked website and chococurb.com ]
[ products were received complementary for review purposes. All opinions are my own and are unbiased. ]

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