On my most recent trip to the organic shop, I just couldn't resist trying Taza's Guajillo Chilli Chocolate. And at $6.55 for two small disks, that is saying something.
I was pleasantly surprised when I opened the paper wrapper to find a dark, segmented wheel of chocolate with another underneath. Thinner than some more commercial chocolate bars, but thick enough to get a good mouth feel when I bit into it.
The chocolate itself, when sectioned off, first feels gritty against the teeth. This is my first experience of true stone ground chocolate which hasn't been highly processed, and it is a totally different experience. It doesn't melt in the mouth like other chocolates do, rather it sits there to be savoured, the dark notes coming first, the chilli later to linger in the mouth.
A little bit of it really is enough to satisfy a chocolate craving, so I put the rest away for another day. Next time I pull it out I try making hot chocolate with it. I warm milk and use one segment in my mug. It isn't strong enough, so I use another. It's pretty good but I decide I'd rather eat it as the chilli doesn't last as long in milk and I like the reminder that I just ate something special.
Later still, on the Taza website I discover that this chocolate I have been enjoying (it has surprisingly lasted me a whole week!) is also fair and direct trade, with the farmers receiving at least $500 US per metric tonne above the New York International Commodities Exchange price. Now I know that my purchase has also gone towards improving the lot of the farmers who produce my favourite thing on earth, which helps me to not only enjoy my chocolate but also sleep easily at night.