I was recently approached about trying out Cococlectic, a brand new artisan chocolate subscription box. Of course I agreed – who am I to turn down the opportunity to taste test chocolate?! My box arrived yesterday and I was so impressed that I’m posting my review the next day – a rare thing these days!
But how could I not be impressed? Look at that packaging! Even the wrapping alone oozes luxury.
Granted, part of that might be my obsession with all things paper-related, and the fact that Cococlectic has its own wax seal bearing its logo. Pretty awesome, right?
Once I (sadly) opened up the packaging, I found four artisan chocolate bars inside from Twenty-Four Blackbirds Chocolates. Twenty-Four Blackbirds is a bean-to-bar artisan chocolate maker located in Santa Barbara. They source their cocoa beans from all over the world and then do everything in-house, from roasting the beans, making it into chocolate, and designing the labels.
And what cute labels, too. In addition to the rad hand-drawn designs on the front of each package, the back contains the specific lot that each chocolate bar is from as well as the date by which the chocolate should be consumed!
The fun doesn’t stop on the back of the label, however, as I found this little surprise waiting for me when I opened up the flap. It reads: “There’s no law that says you have to share this bar.” No worries about that!
And then there’s the chocolate.
Each chocolate bar has the same logo printed on it and yes – the chocolate bars from Twenty-Four Blackbirds taste as delicious as they look! There is just nothing like a high-quality piece of dark chocolate. This chocolate is so smooth that it tastes almost creamy. Yet it also tastes kind of smoky. It is slightly bitter at first, but that flavor dissipates quickly and you’re left with the taste of slightly sweet velvety chocolate. It is, quite honestly, some of the best dark chocolate I’ve ever had, which is no small feat considering I only eat dark chocolate at this point.
I don’t know enough about chocolate to comment really on the different beans and chocolate percentages but I can tell you this: the darker the better, in my opinion! I preferred the 75% Bolivia to the 68% Dominican Republic. According to the description on the Twenty-Four Blackbirds website, it’s no wonder that I preferred the 75% Bolivia!
The flavor of this bar is earthy (for any wine connoisseurs reading, think forest floor) and creamy, and about midway through tasting, tastes just like a brownie.
As for the 68% Dominican Republic:
This bar is characterized by a rounded cocoa flavor, perfectly balanced with a slight fruity acidity and caramelized sugars.
Herein lies why I love subscription boxes. Without Cococlectic, I never would have discovered Twenty-Four Blackbirds Chocolates. I’ve never been to Santa Barbara and it’s not on my agenda anytime soon. Chocolates from Twenty-Four Blackbirds are sold across the country and now I’ll be on the lookout for this brand. When a subscription box succeeds, it takes you to a different place or provides access to products that never would have crossed your path otherwise. For that, I think Cococlectic does an amazing job and I can’t wait to see what chocolate companies they feature in the future.
The only question you have to ask yourself is how much are you willing to spend for high-quality dark chocolate? Cococlectic costs $34 per month, which includes shipping. (A slight discount is available if you subscribe for multiple months.) Each month you will receive four chocolate bars that are sourced from a new bean-to-bar chocolate company. My guess is that many of these chocolate makers will be fairly unknown outside of their local area and the only way you may ever hear about them is through Cococlectic.
While I’m not sure I could necessarily justify spending $34 per month on chocolates for myself mainly because I’m just not a big enough connoisseur, for the true dark chocolate lovers out there I think Cococlectic is a can’t-miss box! It would also make for a lovely gift. I come from a family of chocoholics and every last one of my family members would love this box!
Disclosure: I was provided with Cococlectic Box to review, however all opinions expressed above are my own.