January 24th, 2011, 8:05 pm

Nothing Via Please: A Review of Starbucks' Mocha Dark Chocolate

Instant coffee was meant for the military as a wartime ration; Civil War soldiers tested it out. In theory, it makes sense; you need to get up and march, but you were marching all night and you don't have time to grind the beans and brew them. You only need to heat up water and mix the instant coffee in with it. I can respect that, especially since there are mornings when you run out of coffee beans or the grinder won't work.

I also respect Starbucks; in fact, I used to buy their $2 chocolate bars once a day when Green and Black wouldn't suffice. So why do they put instant coffee in their gourmet bars?

For the record, Starbucks makes GREAT dark chocolate bars, perfect for exam stress. The milk chocolate is best enjoyed in small doses, and only get the caramel if you have no grudge against corn syrup. That is why I'm sad to say I don't like what they've done with their mocha version.
Dry instant coffee (the Starbucks brand is called Via) does not belong in a chocolate bar. I don't mean to complain, but I love chocolate covered espresso beans for their texture as well as their taste. You get a satisfying, a layer of chocolate, and a nutty taste that fills your mouth. In other words, you get a fulfilling process.

Instant coffee clumps the chocolate with a powdery bitterness, and you don't get to enjoy the bar. Starbucks, PLEASE use real espresso beans in your bars! We prefer brew to powder, and you know that.

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