"I'm looking to score some pure stuff."
Finding pure chocolate with 100% cacao is rather difficult. The only place I've ever had pure 100% cacao chocolate was the Museum of Chocolate in Quebec City.
Pure chocolate doesn't remind you of the typical chocolate you see in candy bars or even fancier bars. It's not unpleasant but you wouldn't knock anyone over to get some.
Having 75% cacao right after you've had 100% cacao produces a sugar not-so-high but is a boost by comparison.
72% cacao is the highest I see in everyday circumstances. My taste buds are like the bus in "Speed," anything below 60 and my taste buds will explode.
While wandering around the candy section at Eataly, I came across a square of 90% cacao.
90% cacao is not 100% cacao, but further away from 72% cacao. This was a good thing. The best part: a small square is all you really need when you get 90% cacao.
A standard candy bar you find in the checkout aisle at the grocery store is longer, filled with other flavors, and really easy to find. You pay more than I did for the small square, but from a surface standpoint, the grocery store candy bar is a "better value."
The small square of 90% cacao was well under $1 and was just the perfect amount of chocolate. The higher the cacao content, the less you want to eat: a successful strategy. Though the 90% cacao and the grocery store candy bar are distant, very removed, cousins.
We discussed adult burgers in a recent What's Tempting column. 90% cacao is really adult chocolate. No kids involved or allowed.
People, especially women but certainly not limited to the female gender, can easily be addicted to conventional milk chocolate. 90% cacao? Not addicting. Not the sugar buzz you get with regular chocolate.
All those times you eat chocolate and say "I'm getting health benefits from chocolate" — when you eat 90% cacao, you really are getting those benefits with only a hint of sugar.
Like adult burgers, adult chocolate isn't for everyone, including adults. If your threshold is a standard milk chocolate bar, try 60% cacao. If your threshold is 60% cacao, go up to 72%. If your threshold is 72% cacao, take the plunge for 90%.
You might find you like the extra cacao. Even if you don't, you will learn to appreciate where you are in the cacao spectrum and your taste buds will have a broader perspective.