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Chocolarder Hand Forages Gorse Flowers For Its Craft Chocolate

Driving long distances can be a real drag, especially if you find yourself on the never-ending stretch of the M5. But the unlikely saviour from the endless monotony of white lines flashing past you is Gloucester Services. No, really (bear with me). Here’s a motorway service station with a difference. It’s more like a farm shop, crammed full of regional products from brands and makers big and small. It’s a destination in its own right, and somewhere you’ll actually enjoy taking a break during a long road trip.

In the chocolate section I found a bar that had been on my radar for years: Chocolarder’s famed Wild Gorse Flower 50% Milk Chocolate bar. I had no idea what it would taste like, but knew I wanted to try it. Bean-to-bar chocolate with an unusual flavour – what’s not to love?


Packaging

Eye-catching packaging made this one stand out on the shelf, together with the promise of wild Cornish gorse flower in the recipe.

The chocolate bar sits inside a sealed paper wrapper inside a brown card sleeve, with a black and yellow card sleeve sealing the box closed.

The Chocolarder logo sits at the top in gold foiled print against a backdrop of illustrations of cacao pods and birds perching on branches.

The yellow 50% circle and the black and yellow section at the bottom all form part of the clever plastic-free enclosure mechanism. The information at the bottom includes tasting notes, and a few of the highlights of this bar, including that it is slavery free, fairly traded, stone ground, and multi award winning.

Chocolarder Wild Gorse Flower 50% Milk Chocolate Bar Review
Chocolarder Wild Gorse Flower 50% Milk Chocolate Bar

The rear of the brown box explains Chocolarder’s core values, while the yellow band from the front wraps over and tucks mid-way up the sleeve. This contains the ingredients and nutritional information, as well as details of the foraging amongst thorny hedgerows to source this bar’s key ingredient.

Chocolarder Wild Gorse Flower 50% Milk Chocolate ingredients:
Cocoa beans, unrefined raw sugar, milk powder, gorse flowers. Cocoa solids: 50% minimum.

Sugars sit at a very respectable 31.1% in this 50% milk chocolate bar. It contains milk ingredients and is produced in a factory that also handles tree nuts.

There’s several mentions of how much picking gorse flower hurts, so this bar is most definitely a labour of love.


Chocolarder Wild Gorse Flower 50% Milk Chocolate Bar Review

Pull the yellow tab downwards on the reverse reveals a wealth of information about gorse flower and the ethically sourced chocolate produced by Chocolarder. Who needs Wikipedia when you have so much useful information here?

Chocolarder Wild Gorse Flower 50% Milk Chocolate Bar Packaging
Beautiful packaging makes this bar an experience

It’s a lovely example of creative packaging that not only keeps the chocolate bar safe, but informs and educates too.

The information explains the wildlife that call gorse bushes home, as well as the flower’s uses in as a flavouring and as a natural colouring.

The stone ground chocolate bar is crafted from the world’s best 5% of cocoa beans in Falmouth, Cornwall. It’s roasted, ground and matured, before its transformation into bars. The gorse flowers are steeped in the freshly pressed cocoa butter to impart their flavour for this particular bar.

We’ll cover where oyster mushrooms grow and how to identify them, exploring their natural habitats and pointing out several varieties of this remarkable genus.

We’ll also touch on crucial foraging safety tips and identification pointers so that you’re better prepared for your own oyster mushroom hunting escapades or simply better informed when you spot them at your local market.

And we will finish up with some ideas for cooking your oyster mushrooms.

Important Disclaimer

Below we will give some tips on how to identify oyster mushrooms.  But the information we provide below is only a starting point. NEVER consume any mushroom unless you are absolutely sure of its identity.

Every year people die after consuming poisonous mushrooms.  And with some species, just one mushroom is enough to kill you.

If you are new to mushroom foraging, be sure to run your finds by someone who is experienced in foraging for mushrooms.

f you are in the US, Canada, or Mexico, the North America Mycological Association (NAMA) has clubs in many cities and towns, and it is likely that there is a club near you. Visit their website to learn more.

Always carry a good field guide when you are looking for mushrooms. We are currently recommending Mushrooming Without Fear: The Beginner’s Guide to Collecting Safe and Delicious Mushrooms.

If you can find them, two excellent mushroom field guides are the Peterson Field Guide to Mushrooms of North America and the National Audobon Society Field Guide to North American Mushrooms.  Both are out of print, but you may be able to find a used copy on Amazon.

Ensure you know how to identify common poisonous mushrooms in your area, such as destroying angels and death caps, to rule out the possibility of picking one by mistake.

While our articles provide a great overview, please don’t rely solely on the internet or a mushroom identification app to identify a mushroom. This isn’t a subject on which to take shortcuts.

With all that said, here is our overview of oyster mushrooms and how to identify them.

Oyster Mushroom Overview

Oyster mushrooms are one of the most popular of all edible mushrooms, and they are consumed in almost every part of the world.

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