Thursday, December 23, 2010

Vosges Bars: Peppermint Candy Cane

One persistent theme I’ve noticed throughout baking blogs this month is the combination of dark chocolate and peppermint. I haven’t gotten around to picking up candy canes from the grocery store, so I haven’t tried any such recipes myself, despite my love for mint and chocolate properly combined.

I was ready to add one such recipe to my ever-growing baking to-do list, when I noticed that my local Whole Foods had, yet again, expanded their offering of Vosges bars.

They were now selling the limited-edition Peppermint Candy Cane bar.


Still on sale.

God bless them. Every one.

I opened the bar, and had a chance to appreciate a strong, but not overwhelming, peppermint scent mixed with the aroma of a 62% cocoa dark chocolate. A quick visual inspection revealed chunks of crushed candy cane that were relatively large, but not so large that a bite would be overwhelmed by candy cane bits.

The finely crushed candy cane bits resulted in a refreshing mint taste that balanced well against the dark chocolate, which had a hint of sugar and a coffee undertone that was a bit difficult to tease out with the strong mint flavor. The overall level of sweetness is just about perfect, with most of the sugar coming from the candy cane bits, which somehow stay nice and crisp surrounded by the buttery dark chocolate and simultaneously blend seamlessly with the dark chocolate with each bite – not a bit of crumbling occurs with this creation. Vosges seems to have nailed this one in every way – sweet and bitter harmonized, mint and chocolate flavors perfectly balanced, and crunchy candy cane bits mixed with silky dark chocolate in a way that they meld together perfectly.

I might have stockpiled some of these as well. In my chocolate cabinet.

Look, how many times to I have to reference my chocolate cabinet before you believe that it’s real? It’s a necessity for times that you discover limited edition chocolates and have to stockpile for the long haul. And this, my friend, is one of those times.

Do you like chocolate and mint together? Is there a bar that you think does it exceptionally well?

13 comments:

  1. I looooove chocolate and mint!!!!!!!!!!! The thing is, I'm the only one in the entire family. So I don't get a lot. Ghiradelli makes a good dark and white creamy mint chocolate bar.

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  2. I absolutely love and adore chocolate and mint together. However, candy cane to me is not the height of mint/chocolate combinations. I just don't love the sticky texture of the candy cane bits with the chocolate. Although I've had some candy cane chocolate bark and macaroons over the past month, and I did still enjoy them very much.

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  3. By the way, the commenting system is sneaky: you think you commented, and THEN it pops up the word verifier. Not sure if it was on purpose.

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  4. Chocolove's Peppermint is a bit too intensely toothpastey for me, and Lindt's Excellence bar is too low percentage a dark chocolate for my liking.... once again, I have to be super envious of you trying these :)

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  5. @fitchocoholic I've had the Ghirardelli before - I also like the squares they make that are similar.

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  6. @Alina @ Duty Free Foodie This is probably similar Alina - it's small little bits, almost like peppermint toffee - you'd like it.

    And I'll check on the word verification - I think I might have done something by accident. Thanks for the heads up!

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  7. @Hannah Hmmm...I'm with you, Hannah - no chocolate plus toothpaste.

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  8. Hmm, I just realized this is the first year I haven't made peppermint bark in a while.

    I love this flavor combination, and that gingerbread one sounds awesome! At my Whole Foods, I keep seeing the mushroom one. O_o

    p.s. "chocolate cabinet" - I'm not surprised!

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  9. I use my chocolate cabinet for when my favorite chocolate is on sale. Having a chocolate cabinet just makes sense.

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  10. @Anna S. I nominate "Having a chocolate cabinet just makes sense" for best sentence of 2010.

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  11. Hahaha! Thank you. My chocolate cabinet is my favorite cabinet.

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  12. @Anna S. We should do a chocolate cabinet exchange. Well, not the whole thing. But 1-2 bars.

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