I was so, so excited to get my hands on these limited release bars by Harper Macaw! I remember seeing Harper Macaw release a teaser picture on social media on their barrel aged chocolate bar, and I wanted to get some in time for Valentine’s Day for my boyfriend, who appreciates bourbon. The bars came out sooner than I expected, and I just placed an order as soon as I could. The cafe mocha bar was brand new to me as well.
Harper Macaw, if you aren’t familiar with them, is based out of Washington, D.C. In fact, if you’re into electronic dance music such as trance and electro house, and you’ve gone to the big room club Echostage, Harper Macaw is actually just up the road. I’ve gone to see my favorite DJ, Armin van Buuren, at Echostage a few times now, but I had no clue at the time that a local chocolate maker was just several minutes away! If you want to read a little more about Harper Macaw and their story, check out their website and you can look back to when I first reviewed them as well.
For those who also appreciate bourbon, scotch and whiskey and like to keep an eye for how old your drink is, the back of the bar shows that the cacao was barrel aged for 5 months with the help of Eight Distilling, who are also in D.C. This is a really neat way to incorporate alcoholic flavors into cacao!
The bar has the same mold and shape as the rest of the original Harper Macaw bars. The scent of bourbon was light, but the flavor was strong. The bourbon itself seemed to taste smoky with a hint of caramel. The bourbon flavor for me was dominant and the smokiness lingered in the aftertaste. I had my boyfriend, a couple of bourbon-appreciating friends and coworkers try this bar. My boyfriend and friends could taste some of the bourbon, but my coworkers only tasted the chocolate, which they thought was bitter. I say if you are familiar with the scent or flavor of bourbon or know someone who appreciates it, give this bar a try and let me know your thoughts!
Though Harper Macaw only uses cacao beans from Brazil, the back of the package shows that Colombian coffee was used with this bar. Here’s what really confused me about this chocolate… the bar smelled like coffee, it tasted like roasted coffee, and suddenly I got this flavor that strongly tasted like almond butter. I kid you not. When I had friends and coworkers try this bar I pressed them to tell me what they were tasting. My friends tasted the same almond butter flavor and they were equally surprised. Thankfully those same friends were also coffee aficionados, and they were able to confirm that Colombian coffee can have a nutty favor to it. My coworkers tasted the coffee, but not so much the almond butter flavor. I was pleasantly surprised by this bar, and I would definitely get it again if I get the chance!
Harper Macaw: Made in Washington, D.C.
These are my personal thoughts and experiences. I did not receive pay or any compensation for reviewing any products. Website links to articles, companies and other sources of information directly related to the topic written within the posts were included during the time of writing and the writer will not be held responsible for future changes on such website links. All images are original and the property of Time To Eat Chocolate unless specifically stated otherwise.