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    • Chris MacAskill

      It's my guilty pleasure. Am I imagining things or has super dark chocolate become a hipster popular thing now?

      I've wondered about the health of it. We see occasional light articles in popular magazines that seem to be sponsored by Mars and Nestle, but they sound too good to be true. Yesterday I listened to an interview of Dale Bredesen who has a regarded book at Amazon The End of Alzheimer's: The First Program to Prevent and Reverse Cognitive Decline.

      He seems pretty credible. He says it's very important to eat some very dark chocolate every day. All right then, where do we start? Faves?

    • I certainly enjoy dark chocolate, too, Chris. I'm not sure about a favorite... it's a treat if I happen to be walking past a chocolate shop. Stop in, have one, maybe two. If it's mixed with coffee somehow, I'm a happy guy.

      As for the health benefits... who knows, really. What we (science) know now will likely change. Reminds me of something George Carlin joked about... it was along the lines of doctors discovering that saliva causes cancer, but only when swallowed in small amounts over a long period of time. So... if you like the chocolate, have a piece. Everything in moderation (including moderation).

    • I enjoy chocolate. In fact, I just ate a Hershey Bar with almonds. This isn't my first choice-I kinda like euro style (less sweet).

      I can see how a bit now and again would be healthy. Especially paired with a nice red...

    • I like my dark chocolate to be right between the sweet and bitter side. It depends on the brand, but somewhere between 70-85% usually.

    • The only problem is when I run out. 80% is about right for me, but it's hard to find it with almonds, which I also like. So I have a daily ration of Valor 70% with almonds (a Spanish brand). TBH, I don't pay any attention at all to the health claims. As with red wine, they seem to change monthly.

    • Chris MacAskill

      Over time I have slowly evolved to really dark chocolates. I think it's an acquired tasted, like black, dark-roast coffee. These two chocolates helped me get there. I was okay with the 100% because of the currants. Mmmm. And Wicked Dark because it was 95%, which wasn't 100%.

    • Chris MacAskill

      I love you, Kiko. 😁

      I'm so lucky to like the really really darks right now because for whatever reason they have caught on and there are tons of varieties. We saw this Montezuma's Absolute Black at Trader Joe's and the clerk said it was experimental and they only had a few bars. But it sold out so fast they decided to stock it and now they have it up by the check-out counters. The clerk said they were very surprised at how well it sells. I heard Kevin Rose say in his podcast that he melts a cube of 100% n his coffee every day.

    • got the Taza wicked dark at Whole Foods yesterday, made brownies with it last night... :)

    • Is chocolate healthy? Seriously? Who cares! Apropos the thread about "104-year-old renowned Australian scientist David Goodall saying goodbye to his grandson before flying to Switzerland to be put to sleep", we all gotta go sometime and i'd much rather eat chocolate and die early than never eat chocolate. I also feel the same way about booze, meat, motorcycles and even the occassional cigar. IMO, things that give us enjoyment help to prolong life, or at least the quality of life, as long as everything is indulged in with knowledge (and often some moderation)).

    • Totally agree with: "things that give us enjoyment help to prolong life, or at least the quality of life (...)" One strong rule for me is whether it helps to connect with my self and others.

      I love the bulk dark chocolate almonds from Whole Foods. One time I left the jar on the dinning table and observed it slowly disappearing over the course of one week. Now there was intrigue among us about who gave in to temptation and stole the most chocolate... there! Chocolate brings people together (QED).

    • I can never eat the super dark chocolate that is above 90%. I think it is the consistency that I don't care for. But that could be that certain chocolates are better than others and the particular ones that I have tried are more dry and chalky. I've of course have been a fan of Dandelion Chocolate located in SF but for a more local small chocolate vendor, I am a huge fan of White Label located in Santa Cruz. Great. Now I am craving chocolate. :P

    • Chris MacAskill

      I see your 90% and raise you 1%. Oh, this stuff is ssoooooo sssmmmoooottthh. I’ll bring a bar to Brian next time I see him and you can check my facts.

    • They have a 100% (black paper). Picked you up a bar 😱. Haven’t tried it yet so you’ll have to give me the 411 once you taste it.

    • What?! Up by the register? I wonder how many repeat customers they have, though... I can't try anything over 90 without thinking, "There's something amok with this chocolate."

      Of course I also think there's something wrong with pretty much all milk chocolate. It's almost like "white chocolate" to me now, which means it's sort of disgraceful to call it chocolate. ;)

    • Chris MacAskill

      I can't try anything over 90 without thinking, "There's something amok with this chocolate."

      Hahaha, I laughed out loud!

    • Chris MacAskill

      Hahaha, good question, Charles. I feel pretty righteous when I eat leafy greens and colorful berries, but chocolate is pretty high calorie with added sugar and stuff. It makes me wonder how much I should eat really. Doesn't stop me from eating some every day, but still I wonder.

    • Chris MacAskill

      I'm not particularly fond of figs. They're okay, I eat a few now and then.

      But a local grocery has these and I swear they are laced with cocaine.

    • Can we reframe the whole question: who else sees chocolate as an incredible opportunity?!?

    • Popular writer, Anne Lamott brings her keen observation and great sense of humor to  this must-see Ted Talk where she identifies these 12 truths she learned from life and writing

      1. All truth is a paradox.
      2. Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes (including you).
      3. There is almost nothing outside of you that will help in any lasting way (unless you're waiting for an organ). Life is an inside job.
      4. Everyone is screwed up, clingy and scared, so try not compare your insides to other people’s outsides. Give yourself radical self-care.
      5. Chocolate with 75% cacao is not actually a food.
      6. Every writer you know rewrites over and over. Just go ‘bird by bird’ and allow for god awful first drafts.
      7. Publication and temporary creative successes are something you have to recover from.
      8. Families are hard, hard, hard. Remember that earth is forgiveness school.
      9. Food: try to do a little better.
      10. Grace is spiritual DW-40, it changes us, moves us and heals our world.
      11. God just means goodness: it’s really not all that scary.
      12. Death happens and you’ll never get over the loss of your loved ones, but they will live again in your heart if you don’t seal it off (don’t be scared of death, it’s as sacred as birth).

    • Totally agree, with you. I just think any healthy conversation should have different opinions working out the facts based on reason. So I thought I would bring in the contrarian view too.

      Now that I had a few days to think about it, I do believe pure cacao is a food, why not? It is edible. The body digests it and acquires nourishment from it. Dismissing chocolate is irrational.

    You've been invited!