Friday, November 18, 2011

Cacao 70 - destination to warm your heart

You know, the kind of days you are just feeling down, nothing is going well in your life, everything around you just makes you miserable?

Well, well you! Cheer up! Just discovered the perfect destination to make any chocoholic fall back into their addiction, transform your study session into a motivating activity, make any date romantic, or make any crappy day shine of happiness! Yes! You've heard it right! Your tummy, your taste buds and your heart will not believe how awesome this place is!

Cacao 70 that is!

Located on Ste-Catherine, near Atwater, Cacao 70 offers a cocoa bar of over 30 different varieties of cocoa! Ranging from the super bitter 100%Grand Caraque  to the silky 29.2% Blanc satin, everyone can find a choice that suits their mood!  

As we head into the restaurant, we are charmed by its warm decor and the comforting smell of hot chocolate.  We are welcomed with a tasting of their Special House made dark, semi-sweet and milk cocoa base.  I was surprised by how liquid the consistency of the base was.  You'll understand later why.

At a first glance, the cocoa bar menu can be overwhelming.  Everything looks yummy with elaborate description. Chocolate, as coffee, have complex flavor compounds which are developed with  the magic of fermentation and roasting.  Other factors influencing the subtle nuances from one variety to another may include the type of cocoa bean, the region from which it is harvested as well the parameters of processing.  The All Chocolate website provides an awesome wheel showcasing clearly the notes that can be detected by cocoa.

Flavor Notes Pie-chart

However, if you are chocolate 'debutante' like me, you might have some trouble detecting these subtle differences.  Luckily, the staff from Cacao 70 are knowledgeable and courteous enough to explain each type and even offers you to taste the chocolate itself!  Once you have made your choice, you have to choose the house made cocoa base. Again, you can seek help from your waitress if you are confused!

My attention was drawn to the 66% Mexico which was characterized by woody and smoky notes, almost revealing an after taste of tobacco.  The chocolate has a slight acidic taste and really does leave your tongue with a hint of smokiness.

I absolutely adore how the hot cocoa is served.  They used a cognac glass in which they dip the rim in our respective cocoa.  They also melt our selected cocoa at the bottom of the glass and present it to us along with our choice of cocoa base.  This is why it was so liquid! We have to use it to dilute to our desired consistency our hot cocoa.  Thus, you can have it as onctuous as you want! Very brilliant!

The hot cocoa was smooth and rich.  The chocolate covers every single taste bud on your tongue creating pure joy.  Friendly tip: they do give a huge portion and unless you haven't eaten in days, I suggest that you consider it as a dessert itself. It is very satisfying on the tummy.

And of course, we were not reasonable, as always.  We were way too tempted by the chocolate pizza! And boy oh boy was it oh so good!  I was seriously impressed.  We went ahead with the classical chocolate and hazelnut choice.  The dough was hot and crispy.  The melted dark and white chocolate not only made a lovely presentation but its warmth and velveety finish was perfect.  The finely chopped hazelnut added lots of crunch and gosh! Mmmmmmmm.... 

Cacao 70 also offers goodies to take home or to buy as gift! Genius! You can make your own yummy hot cocoa at home to share with your loved ones... or not! 

 Cacao 70 on Urbanspoon

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