- How Jennifer Earle started hosting the testing sessions.
- Which master chocolatier made a guest appearance and what their thoughts were on Bullion’s Fine Milk bar.
- What the majority of the hundred attendees thought of Bullion's dark milk.
Earlier this month, Max (Bullion’s founder) was contacted by Jennifer Earle, also known as the renowned @chocolateguide on Twitter. A chocolate specialist, food judge and consultant.
In addition to this, Jennifer co-founded Chocolate Ecstasy, a luxury guided walking tour. Chocolate lovers can be guided throughout London or Brighton and are introduced to the best, most luxurious chocolatiers in the country.
However, Jennifer was forced to adapt in response to the Coronavirus pandemic. Ingeniously, Jennifer began doing online mystery chocolate tastings which are hosted via Zoom. People who signed up could look forward to receiving samples and being invited to try them live with others around the world.
These chocolate tastings see Jennifer and a special guest blind tasting samples of different chocolates. Thursday night’s session saw Jennifer invite Paul A Young to the tasting.
Paul A Young has been at the forefront of the British chocolate scene since 2006 when he opened his first shop on Camden Passage in Islington. Since then, Paul has won numerous industry awards and wowed customers with his commitment and in-depth knowledge of the craft. You might recognise Paul from programmes such as This Morning and Sunday Brunch where he frequently is invited to share his passion and expertise.
On Thursday night, Paul and Jennifer were joined by one hundred chocolate enthusiasts from around the world. This tasting was extra special, as Jennifer had gathered samples of five different UK bean to bar chocolate makers and organised a group blind tasting.
Max also attended the blind tasting, anxiously waiting to see what the verdict was of Bullion's Fine Milk bar. When asked how he felt ahead of the tasting, Max commented that “it is so important to us that consumers enjoy our bars. Of course, the packaging and design adds to the entire experience but essentially, it all comes down to the bar.”
As the tasting began, participants tried all 5 bars, tasting each one individually and expressing their thoughts. The five bean to bar chocolate makers being reviewed were Bullion, Firetree, J Cocoa, NearyNogs and Seed Chocolate. When it was Bullions turn, a recurring theme present was that the Fine Milk reminded participants of the taste of Horlicks (or Milo for the Australian viewers!) A chocolate, malty taste was noticed and enjoyed, with one participant sharing it reminded them of a Malteser! Notes of butterscotch, buttermilk and condensed milk led to a mouth-watering sensation when tasters were reviewing the bar.
Overall, the majority enjoyed the chocolate, describing it as moreish, delicious with a soft round taste. Moreover, throughout the duration of the tasting, Paul A Young found himself reaching to enjoy more of Bullion’s Fine Milk bar.
The 50% Fine Milk bar is made up of Ecuadorian beans, whole milk powder, cocoa butter and unrefined cane sugar. Keeping those cocoa solids high gives a real depth of flavour, resulting in a bar that showcases the flavour notes from bean, but with a brilliant creamy edge. Because of that milk content, the texture of the bar comes across almost fudge like - really complimenting the maltey caramel notes of the bar.
When Paul was asked his favourite bar of the night, he said “I can’t remember the name, but I cannot stop eating this one” as he was holding a piece of Bullion’s Fine Milk. Furthermore, Paul went on to express “love your branding and chocolate. [I] Really love how your messaging is nostalgic and current.”
Max and all of us at Bullion want to thank Paul for his kind words. Of course we thank Jennifer for including us in such an entertaining yet educational experience and as one of the few bean to bar chocolate makers we were honoured to be involved. We are so glad to see that the five bean to bar chocolate bars were enjoyed by participants and thank them for their honest opinions and kind words. It is incredibly refreshing to see the growing interest in the stories behind the origins. Here at Bullion look forward to sharing an in-depth look at how bean to bar chocolate is made in an upcoming blog series #BehindtheBar.
If you would like to experience the flavour Paul A young’s favourite bar of the night, Bullion’s Fine Milk bar is available here. Again thank you to all that tried and took part in such a special event. From the feedback, we’re thinking perhaps a Horlicks chocolate could make for a good feature on Paul’s counters but what do you think? Let us know and tell us your experience if you were lucky enough to attend the chocolate tasting by tweeting us, @OfficialBullion.
Keep up to date with future tastings and the world of craft chocolate by following Jennifer and Paul via the links below:
Jennifer Earle - @chocolateguide
Paul A Young - @paul_a_young