Thursday, 12 March 2015

Van Der Burgh Chocolaad - 72
72% Fairtrade Cacao
If you're looking to escape the busy canals and hedonistic but picturesque streets of Amsterdam then a trip to the historic town of Delft on a Monday is surely the place to go. Where clearing the beautifully kept canals of discarded bikes is probably the highlight of the day for most inhabitants and for that matter most visitors who unfortunately find themselves in this situation. This is no fault of the town or the good townsfolk of Delft its just what happens when you visit out of season.  

Delft is about an hour away by Intercity train from Amsterdam's central station. Double decker trains run every 15-20 minutes and are speedy, fairly tidy and reliable as they whisk you through the flat, yet to be filled with tulips, countryside. 

A bonus of travelling by train in Holland is that as long as you 'touch in and touch out' you can stop off at every station without paying any additional fee which is not necessarily the case in the UK. Stop off at The Hague or continue onto Rotterdam if you choose. A visit to the Royal Delft Potteries is well worth a trip located outside the town centre. If you fancy a stroll alongside the canals and into residential Delft, allow 20 minutes for an easy walk from the town centre.
Where many bikes and even cars end up!
To my surprise one of the few shops that was open for business was a chocolate shop that of Van Der Burgh Chocolaad. A the time of our visit the occupants were busy making and hand wrapping big bars of chocolate. Unfortunately, my Dutch isn't what it used to be and we just had to gaze at the 00's of bars that were being wrapped for sale.
Historical Chocolate Shop
According to their website the business was founded in 2011 by Richard and Joyce van der Burgh as a result of an extensive search for handmade chocolate bars. No boring packaging for them! Their bars are indeed resplendent and made in one of the most picturesque locations of town. 

Using only Fairtrade cacao they make a variety of bars including milk and dark either on their own of mixed together with nuts, Ethiopian coffee or dried fruits such as cranberries. It was difficult to tell whether they actually make their chocolate from scratch but they do seem to imply this in their message?
Handmade in Holland
Their chocolate bars are certainly beautifully packaged and have the wow factor. Unfortunately, in terms of design there is no inkling as to where their inspiration came from.

I picked out a 72% dark chocolate bar with whole hazelnuts. These are certainly hefty bars weighing in at 100g and the fact that they have used whole nuts makes the packaging feel even bulkier and almost fit to burst. 

Personally, I thought the dark chocolate was too thick and if you are worried about your dentures take a hammer to the bar before you get your pearly whites around this little bruiser of a bar. The chocolate itself is not particularly big on flavour and whilst it is well made the depth of flavour is somewhat lacking with little fruit or acidity....all a bit flat, like the landscape, in my opinion. The hazelnuts provide extra crunch. To buy click here.
Chunky Van der Burgh

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