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How to Taste Cocoa Powder: A Sensory Analysis

How to Taste Cocoa Powder: A Sensory Analysis

A small bowl of cocoa powder on a dark gray table.

Do YOU know how to properly taste cocoa powder? Can you tell the differences between cocoa percentages in chocolates without reading it on the label? If you don’t, have no fear, Luker has given us a quick and easy step-by-step guide to help you out.

The aim of the exercise is to show the differences between cocoa powder with different fat contents (12%, 16%, 22-24%) and compare them with alkaline* cocoa powder.



The following is needed for each cocoa powder sample

  1. 5 gr Cocoa powder
  2. 5 gr Sugar (added to lower the astringency and bitterness level)
  3. 8.5 gr Whole Milk



  1. Mix the cocoa powder and the sugar
  2. Smell the mixture so that you can perceive different aromas.
  3. Add the milk and mix it all. The final texture should mimic a ganache.
  4. Try a small portion of each mixture, evaluate the taste and compare.

Can you tell the difference now?

*ALKALINISATION: A chemical process that reduces the acidity in cocoa powder (raising the pH from 5.5 to 6.5-8) by adding alkaline agents that may change the color of the cocoa powder into red-brown or dark-brown. Those alkaline agents can be added to the cocoa liquor before pressing or to the cocoa powder after pressing.


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