Thursday, June 2, 2011

Dark Angell Organic Candy Bar

Dark Angell Candy BarAt last there are some niche companies out there starting to make quality candy bars. Real ingredients, ethically sourced but still retaining the essence of what a candy bar should be - deliciously indulgent. Jungell Inc has introduced a new line of candy bars that still fit the mold of candy, but with a bit of a twist on the ingredients. Their new line includes three candy bars, but I’ll go with the one that I was most interested in first, the Dark Angell Organic Candy Bar.

I picked up an array of samples at ExpoWest earlier this year, but I didn’t want to write about them until I bought a real set of bars in a store.

Here’s how they describe it: Dark Angell, sophisticated and perfectly balanced. A refined combination of luxurious organic dark chocolate, wrapped around a smooth cocoa center with organic almonds for crunch. For those who prefer a more complex chocolate, the Dark Angell is the candy bar for you. Grab it. Eat it. Love it.

So let’s have a look at the self-declared specifications of this bar: made with fair trade ingredients, organic, vegan, kosher, no artificial colors or flavors, non-GMO ingredients, no preservatives, no corn syrup, low sodium and 0g of trans fats. What it does have in it is real chocolate, the first ingredient is real dark chocolate. So it looks good so far. Then it goes on: tapioca syrup, oats, almonds, dutch cocoa powder, sea salt and almond extract. That’s it!


It’s not a big bar, if you’re accustomed to Snickers or Milky Way. It’s about 3.5” long and about an inch wide. It clocks in at 1.31 ounces, which doesn’t sound like much, but nuts tend to be very filling for me.

The sheen of the bar is nice, the dark chocolate ripples and shines. It smells like chocolate, rich and deep. The flavors are quite woodsy when I bit into it. The first time I tried it, a few bites at the ExpoWest natural products expo, I didn’t know what was in the bar, so there was a cereal flavor and a sort of chew to it I couldn’t put my finger on. The center of the bar is a bit of a moist but firm truffle sort of thing, it’s chocolatey but is also studded with big almonds. In addition there’s a bit of rolled oats in there. The thing is, it’s not like they’re toasty and crisp, but more like they’re raw and can taste a little pasty.

I feel like the center of the bar would have been interesting without the oats, kind of like a creamy truffle, but maybe more like a fluffy, more chocolate nougat thing.

I love most of the bar, except for that lingering flavor of raw oats. It brought the whole thing into the realm of “nutrition bar” when I’d firmly decided that I was going to eat a candy bar that just so happened to be made with good ingredients.

The nutritional panel shows some surprising nutrition to this bar as well: 90% of your daily value of iron, 3 grams of protein, 3 grams of dietary fiber. Vegans should be excited that this is a bar that’s really no compromise, it tastes like a candy bar, there’s nothing faux about it.

So aside from the texture/taste contribution of the oats, my other misgiving about the bar is the price. I paid $2.69 for my little bar. That’s $32.85 a pound. That’s a pretty fancy chocolate price. And for that price and that many calories I really want decadent.

Related Candies

  1. Justin’s Organic Peanut Butter Cups
  2. Go Max Go Jokerz Candy Bar
  3. Q.Bel Double Dark Chocolate Wafer Bar
  4. Sun Cups
  5. Sweet Earth Chocolate Cups
  6. Sjaak’s Vegan Chocolate Assortment

Name: Dark Angell Organic Candy Bar
Brand: Angell
Place Purchased: Erewhon & sample from ExpoWest
Price: $2.69
Size: 1.31 ounces
Calories per ounce: 137
Categories: All Natural, Candy, Jungell, Chocolate, Ethically Sourced, Kosher, Nuts, Organic, 7-Worth It, United States

POSTED BY Cybele AT 2:22 pm Tracker Pixel for Entry     All NaturalCandyReviewJungellChocolateEthically SourcedKosherNutsOrganic7-Worth ItUnited States

  1. Hmm, I tried this bar, and didn’t notice the flavor you mentioned. However, the piece I tried was about the size of a pencil eraser, so maybe I should actually go out and get myself one, haha.

    Just found out about these bars, and I’m super excited about them, even if they are a little too spendy for me, haha. I’m pretty much in it for the coconut one, though.

    Comment by karen on 6/02/11 at 8:27 pm #
  2. The coconut one is the best they make.  This is a great company, I talked to the owners for some time at Sweets and Snacks 2011 and really enjoyed meeting them and seeing a love of candy and simple ingredients to make a nice tasting candy bar.  Great review.

    Comment by SugarPressure (Mark D.) on 6/03/11 at 4:02 pm #
  3. I don’t want raw oats in anything that’s $32.85 a pound.

    Comment by Liz/PDX on 6/05/11 at 9:10 pm #
  4. Thanks so much for the review Cybele.  I think you described the bar very accurately, and after years or reading this blog, it’s quite a thrill to see our work here.

    To comment on the use of oats: it’s something that we went back and forth on.  Without them, the bar loses a lot of the chew that makes it, to us, a candy bar.  One way around that would have been to use egg whites, but we were committed to making at least one vegan candy bar that uses REAL chocolate.  We just don’t think that it’s a candy bar without cocoa butter.  I would like to mention that the oats we use are crushed, so you will not find any whole/recognizable oats in the bar, like in a granola/health bar.  95% of the people we had taste the bar before we launched it could not detect them, and that is still the case when we sample the bars.  When tested against a similar formula that used no oats, this was preferred.

    Our milk chocolate bar, the Angell Crisp, uses no oats (it relies on rice crisps for texture).

    As for the price: Over 50% of the bar is high quality Fair Trade Certified organic chocolate.  Chocolate is up 150% in the past 24 months.  It’s a sad fact :(  We’ll keep trying to keep costs down and, as we get a little more traction, we’ll hopefully be able to get the price down too.  I often see the bars on sale for under $2.00.

    Anyway, thanks again, and thanks to your readers for their kind comments.

    Christopher Angell
    Angell Bars

    Comment by Christopher Angell on 6/06/11 at 5:38 pm #
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