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Harping on Harper Macaw, DC Chocolate Maker

Harper Macaw The Coffee Bar Packaging

International Chocolate Day, another beautiful chocolate holiday in the yearly calendar. Which chocolate bar did you enjoy this day? We hope it brought you a time cupsoul, a moment of inspiration and serenity.

Time Cupsoul celebrated with a bar from Harper Macaw. This ins’t a new feat. We’ve already been harping on Harper Macaw, first breaking the news of their holiday bar, Winter’s Cheer, last season, and also, naming them as a truly must-visit/must-taste DC chocolate maker in this guide. Yet, we simply must harp some more. And if we had a real harp, well yes, we would henceforth strum its beautiful strings and sing a romantic ballad to this DC brand. 

Harper Macaw is one of those innovative makers that comes out with new bars every — what seems like — few months, and as soon as we saw their coffee bar, we knew it was love at first sight. The Coffee Bar‘s packaging is absolutely stunning, with warm sunset colors of orange, blush and purple, golden lettering forming the Harper Macaw logo, and a diamond with “DC” inside. The packaging text reads, “Dark milk chocolate with coffee beans.” Coffee and chocolate – the two very loves of Time Cupsoul. How could we resist?

The back of the bar’s package states:

“Say hello to your new breakfast blend. Until very recently the world viewed cocoa and coffee as mere commodities, indistinguishable in quality. This chocolate bar represents our challenge to that concept and pays homage to these two glorious tropical fruits. To give this chocolate batch a mocha kick we got our hands on some expertly roasted coffee beans and dumped them straight into our cocoa bean grinding process.”

How incredibly intriguing. Reading the description in the chocolate shop, Time Cupsoul immediately lit up inside. This had to be good. There was more. The origins:

Directly traded cocoa: Konagano Estate – Brazil

Coffee origin: Pereira Sisters Estate – Brazil

Coffee roaster: Ceremony Coffee Roasters

The coffee within this bar was roasted by Ceremony Coffee?! You all are required to know the true love affair that Time Cupsoul has with Ceremony Coffee Roasters in Annapolis, MD. Read about that obsession, here. Extreme respect. And by the way, we aren’t surprised that these two brands (Harper Macaw and Ceremony) teamed up to represent the different commodities; they both carry major credibility.

Harper Macaw "The Coffee Bar"

The molding of this bar is exquisite. No surprises here; we’ve photographed and eaten Harper Macaw chocolate before. (Usually too fast to write an article, mind you; the chocolate is always delicious.)  The bar’s molding is intricate lines which form a geometric pattern reminiscent of an adult coloring book or delicate stained glass window. In the molding, at the top, centered, is the Harper Macaw logo, a bird, and the name of the brand. It’s a lovely chocolate bar molding, and one of our favorites.

The thickness of the bar is of note; it’s slightly thicker than we expected, and showcases a nice snap. The breaks are clean, but somehow you sense (and smell) the richness of the chocolate bar, and understand its slightly, albeit borderline, fudge feel. This chocolate is much denser/harder than fudge, sure, but it still breaks softer than some other chocolate bars, and it’s nice.

We paused to smile as the edges of this chocolate bar seemed to melt beautifully with the heat of our finger tips, especially in this “Indian summer” heat we’re still having in the District. 

The aroma of this bar is one of the best we’ve ever experienced. The chocolate notes proved dominant when compared to the coffee aroma. We breathed in the aromas of cocoa, cinnamon and some blackberry jam. How interesting. This bar certainly didn’t smell much like coffee, but upon first bite, the mocha flavor immediately shined.

But before more flavor notes, we would be remiss to continue without harping on this fact: The way that Harper Macaw’s (“The Coffee Bar”) chocolate simply melts away on the tongue is extraordinary. The smooth, equally distributed, melting of this chocolate over the taste buds is difficult to describe and even more impossible to imagine. How can chocolate be this good? The mouthfeel is definitely a winning feature of this bar, and also probably of the brand, that we must highlight. The phenomenal melting certainly added to our overall experience, to our time cupsoul.

Flavor Notes:

  1. Chocolate: Wet brownie, + Dry Cocoa
  2. Nutty: Nods to almond or toasted hazelnut with a dash of clove and cinnamon come through in this bar. And of course, the coffee note/taste is delicious, which is included in “nutty” on some chocolate flavor wheels
  3. Earthy (clean): Not a normal addition, but somehow, this bar seduces the palate with a unique earthy freshness. This bar’s savory notes taste and smell connected to the land, to the tropical rainforest. Please trust us; we use this classification as a lofty compliment.  Yet another chord for our ballad.

Well done with “The Coffee Bar,” Harper Macaw. Time Cupsoul stands in awe. We appreciate you and hope to see you around DC very soon.

*Please note that this chocolate bar, as consumed and reviewed by Time Cupsoul, was randomly chosen and purchased with personal funds. This bar is approximately $10.

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