Originally published on The Green Man Review!
I have a love/hate relationship with almond candies. I adore candies with the whole (or chopped) nut added in. Candied almonds are also quite yummy. But then there’s marzipan. Perhaps it’s because I was raised on the quality stuff straight from German markets (thank you, Grossie), but cheaply made marzipan is an abomination. Syrupy, heavy handed with “almond flavoring”…it’s disappointment wrapped in foil. Give me the OG marzipan. Like this bar, for example. As my Grossie would say, Dem Germans know how to make marzipan. I concur.
I’d always find Ritter bars at Grossie’s house, and while there were several types I’d happily devour, it was the marzipan I’d secret away. Better than Mozart balls, because Ritter knew the way to my heart wasn’t milk chocolate. Oh no. Gimme that dark, rich cacao every time. This blending of dark chocolate and almond paste is a real treat for anyone looking for a nice nibble.
The individual squares of this bar (er, square?) snap apart easily, and there’s a nice thick layer of chocolate on the edge pieces. It gave my teeth something substantial to sink into, always a good thing. The sticky marzipan holds pieces together after you bite, so if you’re dainty, you won’t get bits of cocoa all over yourself while nibbling. Of course, if you pop whole squares into your gaping maw like I sometimes do? You won’t be worrying about crumbs at all. Win win?
The marzipan is pure almonds and sugar – none of that cloying fake extract that ruins so much of the lower quality stuff. There’s a nice sweetness, and the grains of sugar melt on the tongue after first contact. This chocolate and almond combo is exceedingly rich, so a few wee squares can easily satisfy your sweet tooth. Though of you demolish a good deal more than that, there’ll be no judgement from me.
This chocolate can probably play well with others, but I like it best as a side dish to a nice glass of red wine. Water works too – there’s lots of cocoa butter and chocolate liquor in these bars, so you’ll want to wash these pieces down with your favorite chocolate friendly beverage. If you’re feeling fancy – and who isn’t? – make some pieces the sweets section of a charcuterie board. An A+ dinner is served!