Bloom is a natural occurrence in chocolate, formed by the crystallized fat molecules of cocoa butter. You are most likely familiar with fat bloom and sugar bloom even though you didn't know the name for it. If you've ever had a chocolate bar melt or get a weird texture (a little like white mold) on it after it's been stored for too long- that's chocolate bloom! Also, you never want to put chocolate in the refrigerator! This will most likely end up in a sugar bloomed chocolate (nothing wrong with that…), and the texture will be affected (read more about tempering here). Chocolate is best stored at wine-cellar temperatures, or 55-68 F.
As chocolate makers, we are very familiar with bloom because it can be a natural part of the chocolate-making process. Every new batch of chocolate is first poured into a large block (also called couverture). We then work in smaller batches to create the perfect shiny, snappy texture that our chocolate bars are known for.
The untempered chocolate is not being temperature-controlled, and so once it hardens, some of the sugar crystals or cacao fats will migrate to the surface of the chocolate. The molecules and crystals rise to the surface and create what is called chocolate bloom.
There are different types of blooms, and no two blooms are exactly alike. It all depends on the type of chocolate, the size of the batch, the ingredients... just like no two chocolate bars are the same, blooms will also be different. Bloom isn't "pretty" but it is totally safe to eat.
What is BloomArt?
At DAR Chocolate, we like to think of bloom as the visual self-expression of cacao. If you know a little bit about our story you know that we love to say that the cacao plant found us and led us to our true calling as chocolate makers.
Additionally, we are both products of the visual arts- Joel in film and Gila in graphic arts. When we started out in the kitchen and saw the bloom for the first time, it felt like looking at the magic of nature right in front of our eyes.
In the bloom shapes we see something similar to clouds moving across the sky- random and one of a kind formations that are created and affected by temperature and movement. Although we do not allow bloom in our bars, we are always mesmerized by it’s appearances in our chocolate block /couverture and see them as beautiful, and provoking our imagination.
That's how we ended up photographing the different types of bloom and calling it BloomArt. We include BloomArt on the inside of the packaging of all of our DAR chocolate bars as a sort of homage to the energy and originality of the cacao, and our commitment to the arts and to artists. It is important to us to stop and see the beauty in the world around us, and sharing BloomArt with consumers is a natural manifestation of that core value.
So next time you bite into a DAR chocolate bar, make sure to take a minute and reflect on the craft of chocolate making by admiring the original BloomArt found on the inside of the packaging of every bar, and discover what YOU see. And don't forget to share your favorite BloomArt by tagging us on social media.