HOW TO TASTE CHOCOLATE
Just like there are different varieties of coffee and grapes, there are also different varieties of cacao trees that grow in diverse locations and conditions. This makes their characteristics unique and contributes to the flavor, color and quality of the finished chocolate.
Here are some notes on how to taste chocolate and what you should be looking for:
Notice the appearance of the surface. A quality chocolate should have a smooth, shiny, even surface.
Break a piece off - it should break with a nice clean ‘snap’ sound.
Take a piece of chocolate and cup your hands around it. Notice the aromas. Is it fruity, earthy, sweet, floral, nutty?
Notice how it melts to the warmth of your fingers, do you feel a silky smooth texture or is it too buttery, grainy?
Let the chocolate melt slowly on your tongue. Notice how the flavors evolve. The basic flavors are acidity, bitterness, sweetness and astringency. A good chocolate will be a well balanced sensation of flavors on your tongue.