We’ve all heard of the rising popularity of what came to be known as “millennial pink,” so it’s not so much of a surprise that we now have a new type of chocolate – pink chocolate. This new type which has blush color and fruity flavor is called ruby chocolate, and it is said to be introduced by one of the world’s largest chocolate producers – Barry Callebaut.
According to TJ Mulvihill, the VP of marketing for America’s branch of Barry Callebaut, “In terms of functionality, ruby is very similar to white chocolate. However, it is a totally new taste experience. Ruby has an intense fruity flavour and slightly sour profile.” They claim that ruby is made from pure cocoa beans. As for the price, it is similar to other fancy chocolates, around $8 per bar.
Here’s what the founder of Creamistry Jay Yim said about ruby: “Ruby chocolate has a fruity, berry note to the taste with a slight citrus after-note, accompanied with the smooth, decadent feel of chocolate. Creamistry’s ruby chocolate ice cream brings out the natural vibrant colour and decadent richness that ruby chocolate is known for.” As we can see, it turns out that ruby chocolate can be used for ice-creams, but it’s not that suitable for baking.
Even though ruby chocolate was well-received by many, not everyone has been left with a good first impression after the introduction of this new product. For instance, chocolate blogger Sharon Terenzi called it a “questionable product born to catch the eye, create buzz, and nothing more.” Furthermore, she said that “[ruby chocolate] doesn’t contribute to the elevation of chocolate as a fine food, nor stimulates consumers to look over its aesthetics.”
Apart from Sharon Terenzi, Peter Boone, the chief innovation and quality officer of Barry Callebaut, also believes that the motivation to introduce such a type of chocolate is worth questioning. He said that “Consumer research in very different markets confirms that ruby chocolate not only satisfies a new consumer need found among millennials — hedonistic indulgence — but also high purchase intent at different price points.” In other words, the main purpose of this new type of chocolate might be to look pretty and photograph well for Instagram, which raises the question of its quality and flavour.
Even though it might be worth reconsidering what the main reasoning behind this innovation is, we can’t deny that ruby chocolate does have a unique flavour. Plus, we’re sure that Trader Joe’s didn’t rush to add it to its repertoire for no reason. Now it’s only the matter of time when we’ll get to see (and hopefully taste) treats like ruby brownies, ruby chocolate chip cookies, and ruby hot chocolate.