Dick Taylor is based in Eureka, California, where they make single-origin, blended, and inclusion bars with traditional European methods. They have perfected a small permanent range of single-origin bars (Belize, Madagascar, Brazil), supplemented by occasional and much-anticipated limited releases, such as Bolivia and Colombia. Since its inception in 2010, Dick Taylor has been making excellent chocolate uniquely approachable.
Jamaica Bachelor’s Hall 75%
Flavor: Very rich flavors with great complexity, dominated by classic chocolate notes accented with coffee, nuts, fruit, and wood: Fudge brownie, chocolate syrup, hot fudge, toasted almond, chocolate-covered espresso beans, coffee grounds, walnuts, macadamia nuts, heavy cream, vanilla, wood, a little fruitiness- orange rind. Also the lovely super thick texture that Dick Taylor seems to do perfectly every time.
Recommendation: Highly recommended! I’m always super excited when Dick Taylor releases a new single origin limited edition bar because they are one of my favorite companies and it’s really fun to see what they do with a new flavor profile. It’s still available on their website, so snap one up before it’s gone! While you’re at it, make sure you try the Belize bar too – one of my all-time favorites.
Batch info: Batch no. 20072, Best by September 13, 2021
Colombia Palomino 78% Limited Release
Aroma: Rich chocolate, dry grass, a slight tang, intense aroma, slight fermented notes, a little vegetal – black olives or olive oil.
Flavor: Buttery walnuts, dark chocolate pudding, a hint of vanilla, fudge. Grapefruit bitterness, dark chocolate chip cookies, a little bit of apricot jam and cream flavors under the darker flavors. Thick fudgy texture, pleasant chewiness.
Recommendation: Recommended. Intense flavors and fantastic texture typical of Dick Taylor’s bars.
Batch info: Batch no. 19078, Best before September 19, 2020
Aroma: cocoa mulch, rich chocolate, brownie, cocoa powder, toasted grains, orange peel, honey, leather
Flavor: Darker flavors predominate, but they are balanced. Woody, dark, leather, and coffee notes come first, then mellow out to more nutty flavors and oak leaf tannins. Rich cocoa, grapefruit, coffee, walnut skin, red wine, sour cherries, walnuts, toast, grape, a little bite, bitter but not overwhelmingly so, a bit of a creamy fruitiness like apricot jam, wood, a little vegetal earthiness, something like pine/black olive/leather, but balanced. The fruity flavors are mostly undertones. A hint of tannins. A little tanginess, and some soft fruit and florals near the finish.
Recommendation: Highly recommended. The intense and rustic flavors of Brazilian cacao are beautifully refined and balanced in this bar.
Batch info: Batch no. 18225, Best before February 13, 2020
Belize Maya Mountain 70%
Aroma: red wine, leather, dark toast, prune, jasmine/orange blossom
Flavor: A cascade of complex flavors unfold as you taste this bar, beginning with a criollo-like toasted grain flavor. Tangy fruit notes follow, sour cherry and orange. It is creamy, with a rich chocolate flavor and notes of dried fruit, dried cherries, a little tartness, grape, and faint walnut skin notes. Sort of a dusty earthiness. Some floral. Coffee undertone emerges near end. Some astringency but not excessive. Pleasantly chewy, fudgy texture.
Recommendation: Highly recommended. Wonderful complexity makes this bar perfect for a tasting session
Batch info: Batch no. 18151, Best before August 31, 2019
Second Tasting - Different Batch
Aroma: a subtle aroma of leather and dried fruit belies the rich, complex flavor of the bar
Flavor: Rich and marvelously complex: starts with lots of fruitiness, both a refined, juicy red fruit tanginess as well as softer floral notes of peach, grape, fresh orange juice, and vanilla. The flavors develop into a delicate nuttiness reminiscent of Venezuelan criollos, with notes of hazelnut and heavy cream. It melts with their signature silky thickness, coating your mouth and absolutely flooding it with flavor. No bitterness, no astringency.
Recommendation: For me, as close to perfect as it gets. Absolutely sublime. Procure immediately.
Batch info: Batch no. 19268; Best before 25 March 2021
Madagascar Sambirano 72%
Aroma: rich, complex aroma – earthy, fruity, and chocolate notes
Flavor: spicy, slight olive oil bite, some pleasant acidity on the finish, brown fruit. Hint of seedy richness, fudgy brownie, tangy, citrus, prunes, cloves/ginger, brown sugar. Very viscous. Brings out darker but delicate, not bitter undertones.
Package says molasses, orange, raisin, toast – I would agree. Also perhaps notes of dried cherry and cedar.
Recommendation: Highly recommended.
Batch info: Batch no. 18297, Best before April 24, 2020
Second tasting (different batch)
Aroma: leather, dried red fruit, rich chocolate
Flavor: Very tangy up front – green apple, a little red fruit, even some bright yellow fruit acidity, orange, cranberry, cherry juice. The initial burst of acidity mellows into caramel and some soft darker flavors with a little bit of earthy tannins. Well balanced with a fabulous thick texture.
Recommendation: Highly recommended.
Batch info: 19310, Best by May 6, 2021
58% Madagascar Dark Milk
Aroma: Complex, more so than many other dark milk bars - raisin and leather.
Flavor: lots of fruitiness and lactic/malt flavors - fresh powdered milk, meringue, strawberry malt, strawberry astronaut ice cream (freeze dried ice cream, actually quite good), caramel, butterscotch, slight mustiness like forest floor leaves. As always, a fantastic thick texture, almost sticky.
Recommendation: Highly recommended. A good dark milk bar with nice balance between the milk flavors and the flavors of the beans themselves. Madagascar beans work well here.
Vanilla Milk 55% (Brazil)
Aroma: dusty earth; milk and vanilla come through a little
Flavor: Super creamy. Vanilla ice cream, astronaut ice cream, light caramel, a little floral. Chocolate buttercream. Works well with Brazilian cacao.
Recommendation: Highly recommended. I love how this bar has lots of milky flavor without being overly sweet. One of our tasters who likes sweet milk chocolate (as well as dark chocolate) actually didn’t like it as much, finding it to be an odd in-between. Just a thought if you are considering giving this to hardcore milk chocolate fans! Still, I love it for combining great cacao flavor with a distinct milkiness.
Batch info: Batch 20162; Best by December 11, 2021