There is one part of Valentine’s Day that even the loneliest of single hearts can’t be mad about: Candy. Specifically, glorious, melt-in-your-mouth-if-not-your-frozen-heart chocolate. But not all chocolate bars are made the same, so it’s important today (and any darn day you feel like eating chocolate) to suss out the best from the rest.
We’re lucky that our elder, wiser and infinitely lovelier siblings at Consumer Reports are so good at testing products, because this week they took on the sweet task of tasting chocolate.
Today is a big day, after all, as we Americans buy 39 million pounds of chocolate every year just for this Valentine’s occasion. Most of that happens at the last minute, which means you still have time today to get your sugar on.
In the dark chocolate arena, three earned the excellent Rating from CR’s testers:Trader Joe’s 72 percent Cacao 3-pack (minibars), Godiva 72 percent Cacao, and Chocolove Organic Fair Trade 73 percent Cocoa.
For those who go for milk chocolate, Godiva Milk Chocolate 31 percent Cacao, Trader Joe’s 3-pack (minibars), and Dove Silky Smooth Milk Chocolate all rated Very Good.
Single-serving chocolate squares
Maybe you don’t want an entire bar, which is where these little guys come in handy. Consumer Reports enlisted public aid to help test these last Christmas at two booths in New York’s city’s holiday markets. Participants were then asked to blindly taste test dark and milk versions of two single-square chocolates — Dove Silky Smooth Promises and Hershey’s Bliss. Sounds like a rough job for the more than 550 shoppers who took on the task.
More people liked the dark chocolate better, but around 15% said they didn’t really care either way (because chocolate is chocolate is chocolate).
At 58%, more than half of the dark chocolate tasters gave the best marks to Dove Silky Smooth Promises compared with 42% for Hershey’s Bliss Rich & Creamy Dark Chocolate.
Dove edged out Hershey’s Bliss in the milk chocolate category at 55% preferring the former, and about 14% liking them both the same.
Check out the expert testers descriptions over at Consumer Reports to get the scientific breakdown of each chocolate’s flavors. And then get to shopping, that chocolate won’t eat itself.
You can follow MBQ on Twitter and hear about it every time she eats chocolate and goes into a swoon: @marybethquirk
Top chocolate bars for Valentine’s Day [Consumer Reports]