I’m one of those people who gets really excited about chocolate. More specifically, high-quality fair trade, and organic dark chocolate. I discovered Salazon at Expo and really enjoyed hearing about their company and sampling some of the dark chocolates with sea salt. Salazon Chocolate Co was super generous to send some samples for me to try and review for you. I even have a recipe coming in the next week using one of their bars that you definitely won’t want to miss out on!
Salazon was inspired by visiting organic cacao farms in the Dominican Republic to create chocolate out of 100% organic, single-origin Rainforest Alliance and Fair Trade-Certified beans. Furthermore, they are one of the first salted chocolate brands on the market, using hand-sprinkled natural solar-evaporated sea salt for each bar. I don’t know if you’ve had salted dark chocolate before, but it’s quite an experience! The salty flavor combined with the rich, dark chocolate has such a unique flavor that’s just meant to be savored. A bonus with these bars is that it only takes a little piece to satisfy your salty and sweet cravings all at the same time!
My first choice was the Sea Salt and Sugar Bar. I found this to have a super smooth texture with a great balance of sweet and salty notes. This has a richness but it’s not super bitter like some really dark chocolate bars that I’ve tried from other brands. I think the turbinado sugar really helps to sweeten things up, and Salazon says that this is a great alternative if you’re used to sweet milk chocolate. The company even partnered with with the Pacific Crest Trail Association so that a portion of their proceeds go to protecting, preserving and promoting the trail. Right off the bat, we’re off to a good start with these chocolate bars!
The Sea Salt and Coconut Bar has just a hint of coconut, and it was nice and smooth like the first bar. Perhaps a little less sweet, but if you savor the bar instead of biting into it, the coconut flakes come through with an added texture. The coconut even has a nice, toasted flavor that makes you feel like you’re eating one of those non-vegan candy bars. The twist is that this bar is sourced with organic, sustainable ingredients and no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives. That makes it taste even better!
The Sea Salt and Almonds bar is one of my mom’s favorites. It’s not as chunky as I was expecting, similar to the original organic bar with bits of roasted almonds from California. I love how the salty pieces melt in your mouth along with the dark chocolate. When you savor the bar, the almond bits come right through as the chocolate melts. It reminds me of a chocolate almond butter cup, but a little heavier on the dark chocolate.
The Sea Salt and Coffee Bar was one I was really looking forward to, and it didn’t disappoint! I found that it had a rich and robust coffee coating, but the inside of the bar was super smooth and much sweeter. Definitely one of my favorites for the variety of flavor, and who doesn’t love pairing organic/fair-trade coffee with high-quality dark chocolate?
I could tell an immediate difference when it came to the Sea Salt and Cayenne Bar. Luckily, it wasn’t too spicy (at least for me), and the cayenne is so well dissolved that it doesn’t mask the delicious taste of the chocolate. Even if you aren’t a big fan of spice, I found that the flavor was calmed down with the dark chocolate. Salazon says that it’s a long-time tradition to pair cacao with cayenne, and now I can see why!
Salazon’s Sea Salt and Pepper Bar was a pleasant surprise. I could definitely taste the salt, but the notes of pepper were a little less pronounced, which I thought was a great part of the overall flavor. This bar seemed a little more savory compared to the others. Don’t be afraid to try it, it’s actually quite good. In fact, I’m surprised that more people don’t pair salt and pepper with dark chocolate.
Lastly, the Natural Sea Salt Bar, which is the bar that Salazon started with! They say you can never go wrong with the original, and in this case it couldn’t be more true. This is the bar I decided to experiment with in some recipes, so stay tuned for the sweet dessert I’ll be posting in the next few days. While you’re waiting for the recipe, check out the Salazon Shop and get a few bars for yourself! Just a disclaimer, all their bars are vegan except for the Dark Chocolate Bar with Caramel. But I can promise that their vegan varieties are all winners in my book!