Here is this fortnight’s review in my journey to find decent ‘Supermarket grade’ chocolate. I’ve not posted one for a few weeks as Christmas and the New Year got in the road. Tradition forced me into artisan chocolates, German chocolates (with or without marzipan) and homemade chocolates. But now we’re back to the reviews of the ‘Supermarket grade’ stuff!
Just so you know, what I call ‘Supermarket grade’ is – you guessed it – chocolate like products that can be bought at the supermarket. This is in comparison to when I go to a speciality artisan chocolatier’s place and grab something from them… or my local German Pantry for some tasty Christmas treats.
And what I mean it ‘being decent’ is a chocolate that tastes great, is good quality and created/ sold ethically. So, yeah, my hunt is long and hard. Not that I really mind being forced to only buy chocolate from a decent, local chocolatier… it is sometimes just nice to be able to grab some while at the supermarket as it’s more convenient… and I’m less likely to spend half my food budget on a couple of hundred grams of artisan heavenly, chocolatey goodness. 😉
And here is a bit of a disclaimer for you all:
I bought this product with my own money, and it was a random choice from the supermarket shelf. I am not being paid to make this review, nor am I deliberately singling this product or company out. I’m just trying to give an open and honest review on chocolates I am buying and trying in my search for decent ‘Supermarket grade’ chocolate.
Please note: My review is based solely on Alter Eco Dark Mint Chocolate. This is not a review about Alter Eco themselves or any other products, services or business they may offer.
Brand name: Alter Eco Dark Mint.
Certified Organic: USDA certified organic.
Fair trade: As stated on their websites, they are: “proud partners of Institute of Marketecology (IMO), Fair Trade USA and the Fairtrade Labelling Organization (FLO), all of our products are Fair Trade Certified through multiple different certifiers.”
Rainforest alliance friendly: Not that I could gather from the packaging or website, but they do state they are carbon neutral and strive for zero waste. So that’s a start.
Palm oil free: Although I can’t find a definite answer on the packaging or website, from the listed ingredients, I’d say yes they are palm oil free.
Dairy Free: Again, based on the ingredients listed on the packaging, it does appear to be dairy free and vegan friendly.
Grain/gluten free: Again, based on the ingredients listed on the packaging, Alter Eco Dark Mint is grain and gluten free.
Blend or single origin: The Alter Eco website states it is a single origin from Ecuador.
Contains nuts: The Dark Mint I’m reviewing doesn’t list nuts as an ingredient, so I’d say nut free. Though they have the usual warning it is made with equipment that also worked with hazelnuts and almonds.
Any plastic in the packaging: No! Love this fact. The chocolate itself is sheathed in foil and then packaged in card paper that can be recycled. Part of their zero waste and carbon neutral approach.
Net Weight per package: 80g
Owned and made in: The packaging states the chocolate itself is made in Switzerland. But I believe the cacao is processed in Peru.
Where I bought it: Coles, Bridgewater.
5 out of 5 stars.
I have been a fan of Alter Eco chocolate for a while, but I’d never come across the Dark Mint one before… until now. And, as Mint is my preferred flavour in chocolate (that or marzipan) I am in love!
This chocolate has a fresh, dark and bitter – but not too bitter – taste that I associated with a good quality single origin chocolate. The little bits of crispy mint through-out are just the right balance. They give the flavour of mint, without over-powering the flavour of the chocolate. And it’s a peppermint essence too, not a synthetic peppermint so no nasty chemical after taste.
I have to say this is definitely my favourite ‘Supermarket grade’ chocolate so far. As – besides the flavour – the packaging is minimal, plastic free and mostly recyclable.
Oh, and I strongly recommend you visit the Alter Eco website too as they have gone to a great deal of effort to show transparency in what they do. Meaning they show you where the ingredients come from, who grows it, the communities around the farms, Alter Eco’s principles and philosophy and so on. It was such a great read and has really helped make me love them even more. They are indeed a chocolate maker after my own heart and it is fantastic to see they’re doing their best for the farmer, producers and consumers by providing a wholesome, healthy, eco-friendly and ethical product.
Would I recommend this chocolate to others?
Yes I would. It has a fantastic flavour, is made by an amazing company (who have a big heart) and is free of most of the common allergy triggering ingredients. It’s also vegan friendly – no animal products used – and to me that’s an added bonus.
Would I buy this product again?
Oh my goodness yes! Try and stop me! It is going to take a lot to topple this from being my favourite ‘Supermarket grade chocolate’.
In summary: A fantastic product! Great flavour, allergy friendly, environmentally sound packaging and a company that is trying to do the best for everyone by ensuring the farmers are treated fairly for their work and produce, the ingredients used are of the best quality and the waste is minimal. I highly recommend Alter Eco, and not just their Dark Mint. Though I do warn that not all their products will have the same food allergy friendly ingredients… or be vegan.
Until next time,