“ Brand: Cholive „
I love getting post, do you? I especially love getting post when it's a box with chocolate in it :-) And that's exactly what greeted me last week when I came into work. A box all the way from Milwaukee, USA!
Up until recently, I happened to have the job of working in a chocolate shop (unfortunately the recession has hit here too!). Part of the job included tasting and writing unbiased reviews of new products for the shop's blog.
I was asked if I would like to sample a new product called "The Cholive". Of course, I never say no to sampling chocolate, and this sounded really interesting! At first glance, you may be misled to believe that it is a chocolate covered olive, but that would just be gross (I think...?). The company website says that this chocolate was originally made to be a chic accompaniment to a chocolate martini, but has become popular in it's own right, and is a great treat to enjoy along with coffee, wine, or on it's own. So does it live up to what it promises?
I received a tin containing 13 Cholives. So the first thing that catches my attention is the packaging. Now I know that people don't always agree with me, but I really do favour simple, classy, modern designs when it comes to chocolate packaging. And this tin fits the bill - it's the kind of thing that would definitely draw my attention if I saw it displayed in a shop. It's simple, and I like the fact that you can see what's inside. The other really cool thing about the tin is that is has a magnetic base, so you can stick it to your fridge, or your freezer so you don't forget it when you are getting out the ice for your drinks!
Before opening it, I looked at all the ingredients and nutritional information that is clearly displayed on the bottom of the tin (Fortunately, I am very blessed in that I can always do with actually gaining a few lbs, so looking at nutritional facts never puts me off!). There are 35 calories per serving, for those of you that are interested. The chocolate is described at 55% premium dark chocolate, and the filling is a Vermont whole cream ganache.
I also received a little booklet which includes tasteful product photos, descriptions, and some ideas on what to drink with the Cholive. There is also a recipe for a "Chocolate Malt Martini".
I think the Cholives are available to buy in some shops in the US, but you can purchase them online (here http://www.thecholive.com/shop.html). The tin that I received would cost $13.95 if you bought it online. They also come in various forms and sizes of packaging, including 30 Cholives in a jar for $24.95, and a refill pack of 90 Cholives for Euro45. So they range from $0.50 to just over a dollar per Cholive.
Now for the good bit! On opening the tin, I was looking down at 13 dark olive shaped chocolates, all neatly standing to attention, and saying "Eat me!" The smell of chocolate that hit me was strong, sweet and delicious.
I carefully picked my victim, and speared it with one of the little brown plastic Cholive skewers that also came in my box. There is even detailed information on how do do this correctly (see here http://www.thecholive.com/img/skewer%20the%20cholive.jpg). This is clearly very serious business!
My chosen Cholive was easily speared, and.... I bit into a shell of chocolate that was just thick enough (not so thin it crumbles all over the place, and not so thick that you have to bite really hard, and don't get to taste the filling), just dark enough (not so dark that the flavour overpowers the other tastes, and not so milky that it is just sweet).
The ganache inside is smooth, creamy, and a perfect match for the dark chocolate shell. I had meant to take a bite, write a bit, and then eat the rest, but the second bite quickly followed the first, and that was the end of my first Cholive experience. Definitely over too quickly, and I had to exercise great self-control before diving into the tin again.
Yes, this is my kind of chocolate, and one I would heartily recommend. I can't vouch, as yet, for the combination of the Cholive and a Martini, I haven't tried it yet, but l will be sure to try it at some stage! I am off to eat another Cholive....
(Review also on Ciao)
Originally created to be the perfect accompaniment to the chocolate martini, the Cholive has become so much more.