Valentine’s Day has come and gone, but we here at Eggware.XYZ don’t care about that. We prefer a much more important holiday that occurs days later: Leftover Chocolate Sales Day. This treasured day of celebration occurs about a week after several more “major” holidays, such as Valentine’s Day, Easter, and Halloween. For those of us who are bargain-minded, it’s a day of being able to afford decent chocolate and lots of it.
At Trader Joe’s, we’ve partaken of Leftover Chocolate Sales Day by purchasing a limited-time chocolate offer: the Fireworks Chocolate Bar. A bar of dark chocolate is seasoned with hot chili powder, sea salt, and popping candy.
Does the Fireworks bar really pop? Find out after the jump.
The very first thing that happened when we opened the Fireworks bar is that it popped at us. A piece of the popping candy, exposed to the open air, exploded so violently that a chunk of chocolate was sent flying towards us. We felt this was a promising start to the popping candy content of this chocolate, if not a rather intimidating one.
For some reason, the bar does not want to split along its cut lines evenly. Every single time we try to split this bar up into its individual pieces, the bar shatters into pieces. It doesn’t affect our ability to actually eat the bar, but it’s frustrating when the chocolate goes everywhere and we have to clean it all up just to eat.
The chocolate is mildly dark. The flavor’s sweet, but hits the right tones of bitterness that makes dark chocolate. It’s right in between of what we would normally consider “dark” chocolate and milk chocolate. Paula loves very dark chocolate, while Warden prefers sweet milk, so this bar was just right for both.
Right away, Warden noticed the heat level of the bar was surprisingly warm, describing it as “cigarette hot”. Paula didn’t notice the heat right away, but we chalked this up to differences in eating styles: chewing the chocolate releases the heat much faster. The chiles used in this bar are chipotle and pasilla chiles, both relatively milder peppers that are preserved for a smokier and more rounded taste.
The popping candy is embedded throughout the bar, and it violently pops in your mouth. The “Fireworks” name isn’t kidding around. The popping continues for at least a minute after you swallow a piece, and it’s so noisy and crackly you’d think there really were fireworks going off in your head. When exposed underneath the chocolate, the popping candy is composed of large white crystals.
The sea salt is practically undetectable, compared to the spice and the popping candy. We had no idea it was even in there until we went to the Trader Joe’s website.
One thing of note is that this bar does not store well. The candy in the bar would pop while still in its wrapper after opening. Just exposing the bar to air would cause chunks to occasionally fly off! This is a violent candy. It’s a delicious, violent, sizzling hot candy.
4 out of 5 – Worth Trying (Worth Getting Again)
Trader Joe’s Fireworks Bar is a real firecracker of a chocolate bar. It’s got a good, smoky heat, vibrant popping candy, and deliciously sweet dark chocolate all working together in harmony. We’re sad that this is a limited time offer, because we’d get this again in a heartbeat. Maybe they’ll make a comeback in July…