Who doesn’t love chocolate? Chocolate for you, chocolate for me. Chocolate for Consumer Reports’ staffers who worked hard sampling and evaluating boxed chocolates.
It’s not a dream job. Actually, some chocolates that have a very good reputation aren’t as good as you would expect. For example, Consumer Reports says Godiva’s Signature Chocolate Truffles Gift Box was described as chewy and waxy. And evaluators called Harry & David’s Signature Chocolate Truffles plasticky and chalky.
Really good chocolate is going to be shiny, not dull, and it’s going to be snappy as opposed to sort of waxy or chewy. In terms of flavor, sugar isn’t the first thing you should taste when biting into good chocolate.
A Consumer Reports favorite was from Dandelion Chocolate, an artisanal company in San Francisco. The Single-Origin Truffle Collection for $45 has rich, complex confections that topped everyone’s list.
If you want to woo a foodie, Consumer Reports says try the Vosges Haut-Chocolat Exotic Truffle Collection for $34. It features fresh-tasting flavors like wasabi, macadamia nut, olive oil, and curry will please the adventurous palate.
And if you want to give a gift that’s sure to impress and is as tasty as it is beautiful, Consumer Reports says the Formosa Bonbon Box for $31 would be a thrill for someone to receive. One tester actually gasped when she opened the box. The company also offers gluten-free, vegan and alcohol-free options.
But maybe you want to give chocolate that will not just win but also benefit your valentine’s heart? Give dark chocolate—the darker, the better. The cacao beans used to make dark chocolate contain flavonols, which are antioxidants that protect cells and help control inflammation.
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If you think dark chocolate is too bitter, Consumer Reports’ professional tasting panel found some high-cacao chocolate bars that are so tasty it will be easy for you to switch: the Ghirardelli Intense Dark Twilight Delight Bar for $2.90, Hu Organic Simple Dark Chocolate Bar for $6.70, and Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate Bar for 60 cents.
And Consumer Reports says if you plan on baking a Valentine’s Day dessert, paying more for chocolate won’t necessarily get you a better-tasting product. Most people won’t be able to tell the difference. Instead, save the fancy stuff for snacking!