komforte chockolates, where comfort meets chocolate (surprise!)

2 Oct

My weekend has been dark, and rainy, and lovely, and dark and rainy and lovely (there are two days in the weekend, folks). When the times get dark and rainy, it is not uncommon to crave that which is known as “comfort food.” And sure enough, my weekend has seen my face and stomach enjoying the delights of Chinese takeout, moderately spicy chicken enchiladas, walnut and apple waffles, and pierogi with chicken noodle soup. Each one of these treats has delighted me, perhaps a bit more than it should. But as much as savory food occasionally holds my interest, it’s my endless stash of chocolate bars that I come back to, day in and day out.

So, how fitting that my chocolate bars this weekend were from the West Coast’s Komforte Chockolates, a brand built in 2009 on “savory combinations that are easy to love.” Enter comfort food, in the form of chocolate.

If you haven’t heard of Komforte Chockolates, here is where things will take a turn for the strange. Examples A through C of today’s strangeness are the bars featured here:

Ex. A: Ramen Noodle (53% dark chocolate)

Ex. B: French Toast (milk chocolate)

Ex. C: Tortilla Lime + Salt (milk chocolate)

Interested yet?

Apparently, Komforte wants you to enjoy your chocolate, but also be healthy (why do they assume these items are normally mutually exclusive? It takes a lot of calorie burning to chomp through as much chocolate as I do), and so they encourage sharing their chocolate with friends. Given that their bars are awfully thick, and thus difficult to break into any more than the four scored rectangles – large rectangles for 2.5 oz, or 70 g, of chocolate – sharing with friends seems to be a good idea here. So dig in, friends, and join me on this virtual taste-test / strange-fest.

The chunkities you may observe in the above photos come from the French Toast and Tortilla Lime + Salt bars. The Ramen Noodle bar, which in other blogs around the interwebs feature little chunkins of uncooked ramen noodles, were not present in any sort of chunkinses. Three incorrectly tensed words may lead you to doubt my ability to rate chocolate, but when the chocolate is as weird as “Ramen Noodle,” I say a few new words are in order.

Honestly, though, I was disappointed by this bar. I chose this over the more recent “Savory Ramen” bar by Komforte, to taste the original and see what all the hype was about. After some well-chunked tastes, all I can say is that I’m not sure. I don’t really taste the ramen, I don’t taste the soy sauce, and I don’t taste much salt. The chocolate has a mild sweet aroma, and perhaps a mild saltiness of ramen noodle packets. Perhaps. However, the noodles that must be in here are so finely pulverized that their taste goes mostly unnoticed. I choose to hope that I purchased an off bar, and choose to wish that I had gone with the Savory Ramen instead.

The French Toast bar, while not terribly reminiscent of French toast, was a step in the right direction. A salty sweet caramel aroma was released upon unwrapping this bar. A syrupy flavor, similar to what I picture chocolate slathered in butter to taste like, was very strong. With large bits of “French toast,” aka bagel chips (weird, I know), this is an easy to eat bar. It also defines these, for me at least, as candy bars rather than chocolate bars. With a taste as uniform and in-your face comforting as this bar, the term “candy” is most definitely in order.

Lastly, the Tortilla Lime + Salt. The thriller of the bunch. This bar smelled a bit like old chips left out on a counter, perhaps next to an empty margarita glass. For also notable in the bar’s aromas were limey chocolate, and salt. These same aromas applied for the bar’s flavors. The corn chips, of which there were plenty, worked very well with the chocolate. However, they did taste a bit old, and had become so crunchy as to move into the realm of chewy. And in general, chewy chocolate is a bit of a head-scratcher. This chewiness distracted from an otherwise great candy bar, where the corn chips played terrifically with lime, salt and sweet milk chocolate flavors.

Next time, I’ll have to try their Savory Ramen and Apple Pie + Graham bars.

Komforte Chockolates

Available online from Seattle Chocolates, or at any of the stores listed here. Find them also on facebook.

Things I find komforting about Komforte Chockolates: their bars are very easy to eat, and are also affordable – only $3.49 each! Additionally, they have a rather strange promo video that’s hard not to like, or at least be scared of. Check it out.

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22 Responses to “komforte chockolates, where comfort meets chocolate (surprise!)”

  1. Hannah 2011/10/03 at 06:49 #

    I was rainy here too this weekend, Emma-lady! Somehow, that makes me feel happy, although really it means nothing. Hmm. The Ramen Noodle bar here just sounds like the “spiders” we made in Year 9 Cooking Class, which was friend Chang’s noodles mixed with melted chocolate (some people but jelly beans on top too, but, um, UGH.) I like the sound of the French Toast one the best, but that’s probably because I’m a maple syrup fiend. FIEND I TELL YOU.

    • emma schultz 2011/10/03 at 07:58 #

      You were rainy, eh? Somehow, that makes me feel happy, although I don’t know what it means:P

      I think the Ramen Noodle bar could be delicious if it had a stronger ramen component. I spent many years of my life being ramen-averse, after a bad experience with the broth when I was a wee lass. But now, just like the Citizen Cope song, me and ramen are back together again.

      Despite my claiming to love blueberry syrup so so so so much, I’m a maple syrup fiend, too. The “syrup” flavor of this bar was a little fake for my tastes, but it was something that a fiend would probably love!

      • Hannah 2011/10/03 at 08:07 #

        Super Speedy Reply Girl strikes again! (You’ve caught me just before I head to bed. Fingers crossed I actually sleep tonight.)

        I wish I could pretend that typo wasn’t a typo and in fact some Aussie way of talking about one’s mood, but no. Just a typo.

        And fake maple flavour makes this fiend cry. I actually didn’t even know fake maple syrup existed until I found it in a friend’s pantry at the tender age of thirteen. I was so horrified that I couldn’t speak for, oh, three minutes at least.

        • emma schultz 2011/10/03 at 08:25 #

          Here’s a secret: I’ve long loved fake maple syrup much more than the real stuff!

          Do maple trees grow in Australia? Is that a crazy question?

          • Hannahnnah 2011/10/03 at 18:15 #

            I shall ignore the first part of your comment, and reply to the second with no, that’s not a crazy question at all, and nope, no maple trees as far as I know! We have golden syrup trees though.

            • emma schultz 2011/10/03 at 21:43 #

              So is a golden tree the same thing as sugar cane? That’s what the internets claims, but I thought I’d check with the foremost syrup authority that I know. C’est toi.

              Next: if there are no maple trees in Australia, is maple syrup wicked expensive?

              • Hannahnnah 2011/10/03 at 21:58 #

                No, a Golden Syrup Tree is a big large huge flowering tree that grows its own swings and houses baby possums that aren’t infested with crazy diseases and each tree has a little tap out of which you can pour syrup for your crumpets.

                The end.

                P.S. Yes, yes it is. But I’m used to everything food-related being crazy-expensive here when compared to the US. For example, I have to pay $4-$4.50 for tea at cafes, and it usually comes as a teabag in a pot. That’s all.

                • emma schultz 2011/10/04 at 13:58 #

                  I had to muse this one over while I slept, and then while I awoke, and then while I was woke too. I love possums, and everyone hates on them because they don’t think they’re pretty. Your Great Golden Syrup Tree Country is less possum-averse, so it seems. I can just picture having a delightful tea with crumpets and possums (in chairs, not on the table). Their would be lots of red gingham.

                  Wow. The end.

                  Oh, and you should be able to buy your own tea-pouring maestro for $4.50.

                  • Hannahnnah 2011/10/04 at 17:51 #

                    But possums *are* pretty! At least, Australian possums are, and I believe most possums are native to Australia, so maybe America just has mutant ugly possums that were fed after midnight (spot the reference!). I feel I may have to buy you the Aussie book “Possum Magic” some time :)

  2. sarah 2011/10/03 at 12:01 #

    I remember reading about these somewhere. Either the wife of the bar maker, or the wife of the person who designed the wrappers has a lovely blog somewhere out there. My memory is junk.

    I was trying to track them down to try the lime variety. The Ramen scares me as Ramen usually scares me, but I felt like I NEEDED to try the Tortilla Lime and Salt.

    Nice review. I’m no longer afraid of the Ramen, but will pass it over for the other flavors.

    • emma schultz 2011/10/03 at 15:35 #

      sarah, indeed, you are right – I believe the wife of one of the creators is she of wise craft. It’s a pretty neat crafts blog – a new arena for me, the not-so-crafty, for sure. I came across her blog last night when fact-checking for this post, as she announced Komforte Chockolates’ arrival on the scene back in 2009.

      You can find them on plenty of sites online (see the link above), and like I mentioned, their bars are quite affordable. Perhaps they are also easier to find out your way, since you’re basically all West Coast-ish compared to me:)

      And I would definitely try the Ramen again. Savory Ramen too! No need to be afeared, scary ramen posh;)

  3. Mum 2011/10/03 at 17:52 #

    I bet that you’d have chewy chocolate if you had a bar with cherries, or raisins, or some other sort of dried fruit? In the “good old days” there was some sort of chocolate bar with raisins in it that could be bought alongside Snickers, Babe Ruth, Tootsie Rolls, etc. I thought that they were awful, and a bad excuse for what was supposed to be a wonderful treat(“Oooooooo, I’ve got a nickel, I’m going to walk up to the corner store for a CANDY BAR”). Wow, those were the days, I tell you!
    Anyway, I guess that having dried fruit in upscale candy bars is almost common, now, isn’t it? And much yummier, too:-)

    • emma schultz 2011/10/03 at 21:47 #

      Mum, you’ve embarked on some sort of dried fruit tangent that I may or may not have followed you onto.

      The good old days sound horridly sing-song (fun!) and filled with terrible candy bars, aka bars with raisins (maybe fun!). They’re not far off from bars filled with prunes, and I’m not ready for that geriatric treat yet. I wish I had a corner store. I wish candy bars cost a nickel. I don’t really wish for chewy chocolate:)

  4. yummy supper 2011/10/05 at 13:03 #

    Emma, Your chocolate adventures never disappoint! I am fascinated by this tortilla lime concept. Maybe a hangover treat after too many margaritas? But I do know that salty and sweet always equals comfort fin my book.
    I want to know when you are going to whip up your own chocolate creations. You’d make some good stuff!
    -Erin

    • emma schultz 2011/10/05 at 14:00 #

      Erin, there’s nothing more comforting than a hangover treat, eh? Folks are big on the sweet and salty – personally, I see no real need to deviate from sweet. However, I see the allure:)

      Oh, and I also have 10 pounds of cocoa beans waiting to be used in some way. Some way, some how. So I do have big dreams of whipping up my own chocolate creations, definitely!! The problem is I don’t have the equipment (conventional or otherwise) for making it through all the chocolate-making steps. I know what I want, I just need to invest in a few small-scale purchases. You’ll be reading about it on here someday…!

  5. Mum 2011/10/05 at 17:48 #

    I was just refering to your chewy chocolate comment–“…being a head scratcher”. You were talking about the tortilla chips, I know…

    • emma schultz 2011/10/05 at 18:00 #

      Oh, I’m with you! I just didn’t want to think too much about raisins:)

      I suppose I don’t eat too much chocolate with fruit in it, but you can rest assured that whenever I do, and I mean whenever, I always compare it to my wonderful wonderful memories of cross-country skiing and stopping for snacks of fruit & nut chocolate bars. Little did you know the monster that you were making out of me!

  6. Silvia 2011/10/06 at 14:01 #

    These sound interesting, and you are brave to try them! I cannot imagine what a Ramen chocolate bar tastes like!

    I also make this difference between candy bars and chocolate bars, and more and more bars I originally knew as chocolate bars have now been moved to the candy category.

    • emma schultz 2011/10/08 at 10:16 #

      Silvia, I just wish the Ramen bar had been more powerful, in which case I would indeed have felt a bit brave about eating it:)

      I think you have great access to many high-end candy bars; they seem, perhaps, more fashionable right now in Europe than here? I’d love to find more for sale here – it would mean I could triple my daily caloric intake!

      • Silvia 2011/10/08 at 15:19 #

        Well, I grew up on Schoggistängeli… when I went to school, a Weggli (white (!!) bread) and a Schoggistängeli with maybe some pieces of apple counted as a good mid-afternoon snack.

        Schoggistängeli

        And nowadays, when I don’t have any chocolate with me at the office and need some chocolate, it’s what I get myself from the vending machine.

  7. Jessica 2011/10/08 at 00:59 #

    Hooray for trying weird stuff! The tortilla + lime one sounds most intriguing to me, but old chips do not.

    • emma schultz 2011/10/08 at 10:18 #

      Jessica, hah, no, old chips do not. But yes, yay to weird stuff:) With smaller chip chunks, and/or fresher chips, this Tortilla Lime + Salt bar would move into the misty realms of Terrific!

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