Friday, December 22, 2006

Chuao ChocoPods

In case you haven’t figured out already with the irregular posting this week, I’m traveling. But here’s something fun you might want to pack (or pick up as a stocking stuffer) when you’re on the road. They’re called ChocoPods and are made by Chuao, the SoCal based chocolatier. ChocoPods come in two flavors, Nutmeg and Spicy Maya.

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Each is a little disk of chocolate shaped like a cocoa pod featuring dark chocolate (60% cacao) and a mix of spices. The idea is you take a little bite of chocolate and a sip of your coffee for an enhanced flavor experience for both. After all, chocolate and coffee both come from beans. (They really are a great match.)

The ChocoPods are intended to be sold at coffee houses where you’d see them right by the register instead of some mints or a croissant. It’s not a whole bar size, just 11 grams, which is the perfect complement to a cup of coffee or cappuccino. With only 60 calories in the little portion, it’s something you can work into your diet as a little treat every once in a while. The suggested retail of $1.00 to $1.25 makes them cheaper than the actual cup of coffee at most places!

Spicy Maya is pretty bold. Eating it solo, there’s a solid cayenne pepper kick to it in addition to some other notable spice notes like cinnamon and cardamom. But where the throat burning is an issue eating it alone a little swig of coffee settles the flavors out considerably. The bars themselves are sweet, but since I take no sugar in my coffee, I found it to be just the right amount to cut through the coffee’s strong notes. The bars aren’t terribly buttery either, but again, the warmth of the coffee makes a big difference.

Nutmeg is really nice. Very woodsy tasting with lots of earthy notes with not just nutmeg but a touch of eucalyptus, cardamom and sandalwood. This would be great in the evening by a roaring fire.

As chocolate bars to eat solo, they’re pretty good, but I think that Chuao has hit on something for the coffee house set. Most of the time I don’t feel like a whole hot chocolate, but I do want a little something chocolate. I often bring my own, so it makes sense that the coffee house would also want to sell me that too. The fact that they have the unusual flavors makes the whole thing feel a little more like an indulgence.

For only a buck, I would certainly give these a go every once in a while. I haven’t seen them at any coffee houses yet, but maybe soon. You can order them at the Chuao website.

Name: ChocoPods: Spicy Maya & Nutmeg
    RATING:
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 6 TEMPTING
  • 5 PLEASANT
  • 4 BENIGN
  • 3 UNAPPEALING
  • 2 APPALLING
  • 1 INEDIBLE
Brand: Chuao Chocolatier
Place Purchased: Chuao (Irvine)
Price: $1.00
Size: 11 grams
Calories per package: 60
Categories: Chocolate, United States

POSTED BY Cybele AT 6:08 am Tracker Pixel for Entry    

Comments
  1. What a great idea! The Nutmeg one sounds heavenly!

    Comment by Sera on 12/22/06 at 6:59 am #
  2. Wow, those are good ideas!

    Comment by Scott on 12/22/06 at 7:46 am #
  3. Oh yum, Spicy Maya sounds excellent with coffee!!

    Comment by Emily on 12/25/06 at 12:01 pm #
  4. I don’t drink coffee, but if I see them at the place I often stop for ginger lemon tea (I drink it ‘medicinally’ whenever i feel a cold coming on!) I’ll have to try them. Not with the tea, though, somehow I don’t think that would be a good complement…

    Comment by Tricia on 12/25/06 at 4:28 pm #
  5. I agree - these are both worth it.  Chuao promoted these ‘pods’ at a coffee trade show earlier this year, and they were a big hit on the exhibit floor.  I shared a cab with the company’s founder and chief chocolatier—great guy and very passionate.  And I love the spicy maya.

    Comment by MarkO on 12/26/06 at 4:22 am #
  6. These look terrific! I can’t wait until I see one at my local coffee shop. It will be a great excuse to sit down and enjoy a cup there.

    Comment by Abi Jones on 12/26/06 at 10:27 am #
  7. I really want to try the Nutmeg! I wonder why that wasn’t at the Expo….

    Comment by Sera on 9/21/07 at 10:51 am #
  8. I picked up the Spicy Maya pod at a cute little market in San Diego’s Little Italy neighborhood, and it was deeeelicious!!

    Comment by Laura on 11/17/08 at 5:25 pm #

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