The Difference Between Dark, Milk and White Chocolate

The 20 Most Unusual Liquor Flavors Ever - Brit + CoEveryone has a favorite type of chocolate whether it’s white, dark or milk but not many people know what the difference between these three types of whisky chocolate is. As it turns out there is one specific element of chocolate that determines which of the three types of chocolate result in production.

When it comes to white chocolate the fact is that it is not truly chocolate at all, in fact white chocolate is made from cocoa butter and sugar and no cocoa liquor at all. Many people who like white chocolate over dark or milk state it’s sweetness and creaminess as the reason why. Funnily enough the lack of liquor that causes the sweet sugary flavor is also the reason why many chocolate connoisseurs believe that white chocolate should not be called chocolate at all! Chocolate connoisseurs believe that in order to be called chocolate it must contain some amount of liquor.

Milk chocolate, on the other hand, is made from cocoa liquor, cocoa butter, milk and sugar. Milk chocolate is obviously a lighter color than dark chocolate and contains much less cocoa liquor than dark chocolate does. Milk chocolate is the most often used when it comes to confectionary and it is cited by the majority of chocolate lovers to be their favorite of the three varieties of chocolate.

Dark chocolate, in contrast to milk chocolate, is made from cocoa liquor, cocoa butter and sugar. The greater amount of liquor used in dark chocolate as opposed to milk chocolate is what causes the bitterness characteristic of dark chocolate. As the amount of liquor used goes down the bitterness of the chocolate goes down as well.

Well what is cocoa liquor? Cocoa liquor is a paste that is made when cacao beans are ground so finely that they turn in to a thick paste. Cacao beans are ground in a mill where they move through a series of grinding stones which cause the beans to heat up and grind down to liquor. As the paste cools and dries it hardens. Cocoa liquor is extremely bitter, as are the cacao beans themselves, before they are combined with sugars and cocoa butter. Many people confuse cocoa liquor with cocoa liqueur; however liquor does not contain any alcohol and is merely the product of ground cacao beans.

What is cocoa butter then? Cocoa butter is a fat that is extracted from the cacao bean or from cocoa liquor. Cocoa butter can be extracted by using a press which squeezes the fat from the beans but the most efficient way of removing cocoa butter from cacao beans is to hang ground beans in a warm room where the cocoa butter drips from the hanging beans. This hanging method is called the “broma process. “The Costco-model, a Toronto Star article suggests with the help of a couple of retail experts, is the antithesis of what LCBO should endeavor, if profits are the Ontario government’s objective.

The stripped-down, utilitarian model of Costco, offers many categories of products, but with limited selection in each category. For example, if strawberry-banana or cherry or pineapple yogurt is more your cup of tea, you’re out of luck. Costco sells plain, Astro Balkan-style yogurt and it has the entire yogurt in x-large-tub format shelf to itself, with nary a competitive brand in sight. You either buy the Astro tub yogurt, the multi-flavour mini-pak yogurt occupying the next shelf position, or not.

Costco is in the business of primarily selling staple items, with some discretionary categories, at head-office mandated margins no greater than 14-15 percentage points. Which is why you pay the prices you do at Costco, with minimal advertising and in-store assistance, in a sparse, stripped-down setting.

For the sake of argument, let’s take that sparse setting, add in the countless selections of beer, or wine, or spirits you have in the LCBO. You’ve created confusing, cluttered shelves difficult to navigate, with few premium priced items in any category, and little customer service to help decipher which wine is best served with which meal. You’ve basically created the private liquor store in the united states. A private liquor store established to sell you products.

The LCBO is selling you an experience. The joy of cooking and drinking with friends, families or colleagues, at gatherings in your home or backyard. They inspire cooks with recipe ideas and suggest wine/food pairings for hosts on their website and in their glossy magazine (more on that later).

They are marketing premium-priced wine, brandy, and spirits, and artfully designed, themed-gift packs as aspirational discretionary items for you to enjoy or gift. These discretionary items, by the way, bring in very healthy margins to its owners, you and I. Margins which would not necessarily be maintained in the Costco model, despite what the retail experts mentioned in the same article tell you. Psychology does affect purchasing decisions, including what a consumer is willing to pay in a retail store with minimal dressing as Costco, versus one with the presence LCBO establishes in its stores, similar to the Bay. Which retail outlet do you think would be the destination for $150 plus bottle of wine or fine cognac?

For the record, operating expenses of 16. 2% in a retail environment is a reasonable number. As for the suggestion that LCBO reduce its marketing spend, readers should note anytime a retailer like LCBO or Metro or Wal-Mart or Costco produce a flyer or magazine, vendors cover the cost of production, by paying for advertising space. Marketing also helps communicate the experiences LCBO sells.

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