Who Wants a Chocolate Bar?

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Strength is the capacity to break a chocolate bar into four pieces with your bare hands – and then eat just one of the pieces -Judith Viorst

A chocolate bar is a confection in bar form comprising some or all of the following components: cocoa solids, cocoa butter, sugar, milk.  The relative presence or absences of these ingredients create dark chocolate, milk chocolate and white chocolate.   In addition to these main ingredients, most chocolate bars contain emulsifiers such as soy lecithin and flavors such as vanilla.

A Brief History

The inventor of ‘chocolate for eating’ is unknown, but in 1847,  Joseph Fry & Son — under the leadership of the original Joseph Fry’s great-grandson — discovered a way to mix melted cocoa butter back into defatted, or “Dutched,” cocoa powder (along with sugar) to create a paste that could be pressed into a mold. The resulting bar was such a hit that people soon began to think of eating chocolate as much as drinking it. Many people credit this as the very first chocolate bar for eating.

John Cadbury added a similar product to his range in 1849.   The early eating bars of chocolate were made of bittersweet chocolate. Milk chocolate was introduced in 1875 when Henry Nestle, a maker of evaporated milk and Daniel Peter, a chocolate maker, got together and invented milk chocolate.

At the 1893 Columbian Exposition, a World’s Fair held in Chicago, chocolate-making machinery made in Dresden, Germany, was displayed. It caught the eye of Milton S. Hershey, who had made his fortune in caramels, saw the potential for chocolate. He installed chocolate machinery in his factory in Lancaster, and produced his first chocolate bars in 1900.

The Best Chocolate Bars

Happily, there is no shortage of excellent chocolate bars.  Manufacturers around the world produce high quality, delicious chocolate bars.  Who makes the best chocolate?  There are as many opinions from the culinary world as there are chocolate bars.  Here are a few of our favorite review sites:

Food and Wine writer Pete Wells loves not only the chocolate but the story of the Italian brother and sister that created Amedei:

http://www.foodandwine.com/articles/the-worlds-best-chocolate

Real Simple staff members tasted over 180 luxury chocolate bars and report their findings in this extensive bar review:

http://shine.yahoo.com/channel/food/the-best-chocolate-bars-2470684

The website Cooking with Color weighs in with their thoughts around excellent bars ranging in price from $80 per pound to value-priced chocolate bars:

http://www.cookingwithcolor.com/chocolate/best_chocolate_bars.htm

photo courtesy of keenanevans.com

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3 Responses to “Who Wants a Chocolate Bar?”

  1. Lavonda Perdomo
    July 23, 2011 at 7:37 pm #

    decisions, decisions…

    • Chocolate Guru
      July 31, 2011 at 10:01 pm #

      I know…who doesn’t love trying to pick your favorite chocolate bar?? Thanks for comment.

  2. Chocolate Guru
    August 20, 2011 at 4:55 pm #

    Hopefully we can be there the next time for you. We just launched in June!

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