Friday, March 5th, 2010

Review: Love Street Living Foods Chocolate

by Kristen Suzanne in raw chocolate

Mmmm…. raw vegan chocolate! I’m hard pressed to find many people that don’t love chocolate. I’m not sure my world would function without chocolate (raw, vegan, and organic PLEASE!). I don’t consume it daily, but sometimes I wish I could. I love it!

Imagine my delight when Love Street Living Foods sent me samples of their chocolate. Score! Even though I usually keep a stash of raw vegan organic chocolates in my freezer (they’re so easy and fun to make), there are times I run out (oops), and I don’t get to make them right away. For times like these, it’s great to have a source for getting them. Love Street Living Foods gourmet chocolate bars are made fresh upon order according to their website.

The first bar I tried was Chocolate Goji Berry Bar. Before I get into my “tasting” part of the review, I want to mention something. I was under the impression that these were all raw chocolates. On the back of this particular bar, the package reads, “Our hand-crafted chocolate bars are not heated over 108 degrees, keeping all life-giving nutrients, enzymes, vitamins, and minerals intact and available for nutrition…” So, I was surprised when I saw that the second ingredient listed was organic pure maple sugar. I know that maple syrup is not raw, but with the description they gave above, I thought… “Hhmmm… is there something I don’t know?” I wrote them and asked for clarification. Here was their response, “About the Chocolate Goji Berry Bar, the information applies to how the bar is prepared. The particular ingredient is not raw as it shows on the ingredient list.” What they mean by the latter statement is that the word raw is used before the other ingredients, indicating they’re raw, but not before the organic pure maple sugar ingredient. Well, with the written description on the package about “not heating their bars over 108… blah blah blah”  personally, I find this misleading easy to misinterpret, because not all of the bar will be giving “life-giving nutrients, etc” because they’re not all raw.

How did it taste? 

Since I’m not a Raw purist I still wanted to try it. :) Overall, I liked it alright. It had a bit of a grit to it – perhaps due to the maple sugar crystals. On the other hand, the overall texture was kind of light and airy, which isn’t all that common with raw chocolates – I enjoyed that aspect. I’m not sure I’d order this in the future as it seemed a bit overly sweet for my taste buds (my husband agreed), and ehem, it’s not all raw. With all of the truly raw bars available on the market, I’d rather buy those. However, I did polish it off with a smile. It is chocolate after all.

The packaging and labeling are really cute, and the 1oz serving size is nice. This bar still has plenty of nutrition in it, and I think it would make a nice gift to someone who is unfamiliar with raw chocolate, even if it’s not all Raw. Moreover, if it were a choice between a Trader Joe’s organic vegan dark chocolate bar (not at all raw) versus Love Street Living Foods bar (a lot raw); I’d go for Love Street Living Foods.

Next, I tried the 100% Organic Raw Vegan Chocolate Super Fudge bar. This bar was 100% Raw, as the title suggests. The shape of all of the bars are fun… they’re thin and wafer-like. Cute. The taste was pretty good. Again, a tad sweet for me. I like the richer, more chocolate-ly kind of raw chocolate. 

After, I tried the Coconut Crystal Chocolate Bar. To me, this bar is similar to the Chocolate Goji Berry Bar in that it appears Raw from the description on the back, but when taking a closer look at the ingredient list, I can see that there is no descriptive word “raw” before the ingredient organic coconut sugar. It has the same funky grit to it as the Chocolate Goji Berry Bar, most likely from the coconut sugar, but it also has the same nice lightness to it. So far, this is my favorite, in spite of it not being 100% raw.

Finally, I tried the 100% Organic Vegan Chocolate. This label was a bit different. It defines what raw, vegan and organic are specifically. From this, I can compare the ingredients and note which ones have those titles. That makes it a little better. This bar had the maple crystals in it, and as you can guess, the grit was there, but by now I’m getting used to it and maybe starting to like it? LOL

Last but certainly not least, I sampled their two 100% Organic, Raw, Vegan spreads (chocolate and chocolate coconut). These were great, my favorite being the plain “chocolate.” I tried them plain on a spoon, with apple, with raw pecans, and used them in my shakes to add chocolate flair. Hmmm Hmmm. Yum.  

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