12 April 2011

berkshire bark - Tropical Heat

So here's a funny story.
The Uncommon Market unintentionally sells a lot of expired food.
There is expired vegetarian sloppy joe sauce, pasta sauce, curry sauce, noodles (okay, the noodles will expire on May 11th this year), and other stuff. It's not as though the Uncommon Market is AWARE of this situation, though, since the same jars and packets of sauces have been sitting there for at least 3 months. Yes, I've been checking for 3+ months, because I've felt inclined to buy vegetarian sloppy joe sauce, and I've been waiting for a new shipment because the packets sitting on the shelf have been expired since February 2011.
No one else really checks expiration dates, but it's become a habit of mine ever since I bought some chocolate from the Uncommon Market in January, only to find that it had expired on December 17th, 2010. When one purchases a small bar of chocolate for $3.99 (Yes. Everything's price is jacked up), one expects high quality chocolate. One does not desire expired chocolate. In general, I don't mind eating relatively expired food - expired pasta, expired chocolate, expired rice (stuff that isn't perishable), but in this case, I had to make a stand. I'm already buying overpriced Dining Dollars, which I end up spending on overpriced food, so I'd BETTER get fresh food out if it
Sometimes I aspire to work for the FDA's Food Safety department so that I can research what "expiration" means, and whether one would drop dead after consuming some pie one hour post-expiration. Then, I wonder what life would be like being a freegan. If you push back the expiration date by ONE day - 24 hours - much more food (especially milk, yoghurt, ham, cheese, pudding, canned goods) would be saved in this world. However, I can't support any of this because there doesn't seem to be much research concerning food expiration.

Anyway, I ended up switching the chocolate for a new bar that will expire in June (but I've already eaten it), and I suppose the expired bar was thrown away, although it was perfectly edible (yes, I'm a hypocrite, right? Perfectly edible, yet I was so bothered by it that I had to exchange it).
The bar was called Tropical Heat, by berkshire bark, and the impression I got is basic, chunky, wholesome, and...spotty. It contained macadamia nuts, pineapple, mango, papapya, coconut, chili, and cayenne, and I couldn't wait to try it because I do like spicy chocolate.

The coconut texture was very pronounced, but I couldn't really taste its flavor. The pineapple, mango, and papaya were indistinguishable from each other (which is a bad thing, because...they're different fruits) and they all tasted flavourless and had a weird texture. I've had dried pineapple, mango, and papaya before, and those instances never made me think, "Wow. Am I chewing gillyweed? Stale gum?" The chocolate was normal dark chocolate, and yes, there was a hint of spicyness, but nothing too hot. It reminded me of the spicy chocolate drink from the Penn "Chocolate" Festival, so that was good. I honestly don't think it was worth $3.99, especially when I can buy really high quality pure chocolate, or just plain ol' cocoa powder, for $3.99 at Shoprite, or even Trader Joe's.

Back to buying noodles, rice and polenta, because at least those prices are only jacked up by 10-30% rather than 50-70% at the Uncommon Market.

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