Every French food enthusiast is in search of the perfect chocolate for baking and candy making. The key is a rich, creamy mouthfeel, true chocolate flavor, and smooth texture, devoid of any grittiness and undesirable aftertaste. Those are pretty high standards, but it’s how I judge every chocolate that crosses my lips.
How did Guittard pure chocolate couverture wafers pass my test? It is as close to perfection as a chocolatier can get. Their products are consistently excellent in quality, taste, and texture, and they perform well in a variety of recipes.
Milk Chocolate Couverture Wafers – 38% Cacao
Guittard’s milk chocolate is very rich, creamy, and sweet without being overpowering. The surprising finish is definitively spicy cinnamon – in a mild way – that increases as time goes on. The more you eat the more noticeable the cinnamon becomes, all while keeping within a traditional milk chocolate flavor.
I tried the milk chocolate couverture wafers as both a filling and a coating for truffles, which worked very well and had a pleasing taste. The melted wafers, added to a chocolate meringue batter and a ganache, had true milk chocolate flavor and didn’t negatively alter the texture of the finished recipes.
Milk chocolate has a nasty reputation for hardening during the baking process, forming rock-hard nuggets. How did Guittard fare this test? Impressively, when chopped up and added to a simple cookie bar batter, the wafers melted, creating luscious, little pools of hot chocolate within the cookie bars.
Semisweet Chocolate Couverture Wafers – 61% Cacao
Guittard’s semisweet chocolate is extremely smooth, to the point of being almost slippery as it melts. It features a very pure, intense chocolate taste at the beginning that matures into a berry – predominantly cherry – aroma. It fades out evenly into a desirable, slightly tannic flavor.
After sampling the Guittard semisweet alone and in a variety of applications, I found it to be pleasantly intense and versatile, while not succumbing to the acrid tones so many other semisweets take on.
White Chocolate Couverture Wafers – 31% Cacao
Guittard’s white chocolate wafers are smooth and very different from most other brands. As with the other wafers, they’re creamy, smooth, and have a very rich, clean flavor. The flavor is how they stand out from the competition, though. Most white chocolates are simply a catalyst for other flavors when they are added to cookies and candy. The Guittard white chocolate wafer is notable for its own flavor, which is slightly warm, very rich and sweet, with a bit citrus at the finish.
They’re delicious to nibble on alone, albeit a little rich for my taste. They performed beautifully in a number of recipes, including truffles, white chocolate “brownies,” and a fondue. The only possible drawback to the white chocolate wafers is their strong flavor. While they’re not exceedingly potent, the creamy citrus notes might detract from simpler recipes and those with clashing flavors.
Overall, Guittard couverture wafers are a wonderful product and a great buy. At approximately $12 per pound, they’re definitely pricier than most supermarket brands. However, they set a standard as one of the best chocolates in the world and that is well worth the investment. I highly recommend Guittard.