This is a very popular post in terms of reader comments. Most people appear to be upset that I didn’t do enough research into the need for these types of candies for those who can’t ingest sugar. I’m now 8 years older — sigh — since this was first written and I think it’s safe to say that if I were to pen this today, I’d be more cognizant of these needs, and review accordingly. The conclusion of my review wouldn’t be different: these are not for me; however, I’d be more open to why these could be for you. Keep that in mind before commenting about how I don’t understand the needs of others. -Matty
Have you noticed that chocolate bars are the new POS rage? For those not up on their retail, “POS” stands for point of sale and many of us in the industry refer to the enticing goods on your way out of the supermarket as POS items.
Actually, I’m not in retail. But still, if I was, I’m sure I’d use that term.
Every up and comer store (even old stand-by’s now like Trader Joe’s) has 586 different chocolate bars for you to buy at $1.89 as you head out the door. The bars usually look custom fancy and if they don’t put the “caCAO” (say cuh-COW) percentage on the package, then they’ve lost the race already. Billy Blow’s Special Chocolate Boomerang has 63% cacao so Susie’s Sumptuous Choco Sensation sure as shit better have at LEAST 58% of it. This ain’t the minors. This is The Show and you best be bringing the cacAO heat.
Oh, and if you aren’t showing at least 3/4 of the bars as dark chocolate on your POS racks then pack your shit up. Sorry milk choco – but the darks got you beat. Milk chocolate is like what the 80’s were back in the 90’s when we went all grunge and wouldn’t be caught dead in pegged jeans. And the Darks now are like Star Wars: we knew it was good in 1977 though the script was awful. It’s now been around forever and even 3-year olds about the Force.
(FYI – no one over 25 should be caught dead eating milk chocolate. I mean, you’re not seriously thinking of walking down the street with a Hershey Milk Chocolate bar with Almonds in your hands? Riiiight?)
And here we have: Simply Lite Dark Chocolate. It only has 50% cacAO, which I think means…well I don’t know what it means actually. How am I supposed to do the caAO percentage math anyway? Maybe if they make the Hershey’s Dark bar the control group…So when they say it’s “50% cacAO” I know they mean it’s “half as bitter as the Hershey Dark square you’ve eaten before – the one and only dark chocolate available to man between 1900 and 2008.”
If you check out the packaging in the image you’ll see that it’s sugar free, no trans fat & gluten free. For the “Health and Calorie Conscious.”
In actuality – this stuff tastes good. I ate 4 squares of it, each one about 1″ X 3/4″. The bar was creamy – didn’t taste fake sweet like other non-sugar candies tend to taste, and there was some girth to the squares; after the 4 I ate I’m kinda full.
The ingredients list cocoa mass (huh?) and cocoa butter, and the sugar substitute is Maltitol, which upon further review I find has yet to give cancer to anyone. Allright! Buuuut… my first google search turns up this jolly little #2 ranked link to an article from writer Laura Dolson: “Maltitol: Just Say No — Why Maltitol is Often More Trouble Than It’s Worth“. It says that Maltitol has somewhere between 75% and 90% of the sweetness of sugar (oh so that’s why these are good) and also can cause intestinal issues.
Eeks. And yes. These did in fact cause me tummy turmoil. Nuff said.
Sure, buy these. Especially if sugar isn’t something you can eat. And hopefully you too will even enjoy – before you run to said toilet. But, if you don’t have sugar challenges, stick to the real sweet stuff and buy yourself another choco bar at the checkout counter. Maybe the one with 83% cacoa and light orange niblets… sigh.