Battle of the Chocolate Easter Bunnies: Jacques Torres Vs. Russell Stover

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The two bunnies--Jacques Torres on the left, Russell Stover on the right--face off in a preliminary photo.

"In the left corner, weighing in at 4 ounces, the Jacques Torres Easter Bunny," said the white-chocolate ref, pausing a moment to cinch up his licorice-colored pants, then turning toward the other side of the ring: "In the right corner, the favorite at 7 ounces, the Russell Stover Easter Bunny."

Then, putting the candy whistle to his marshmallow lips, he blew one long shriek, signaling the beginning of the bout, then nimbly jumped out of the ring.

The Stats

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The Jacques Torres Chocolate Easter Bunny
Weight: 4 ounces
Height: 6.5 inches
Cost: $9
Place of purchase: Jacques Torres, Chelsea Market
Cost per pound: $36.00
Type of chocolate: Dark
Details: Hollow bunny with back and front detailing, realistically limned, white chocolate tips of ears and tail, in cellophane with plastic violet decoration

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The Russell Stover Chocolate Easter Bunny
Weight: 7 ounces
Height: 7.5 inches
Cost: $3.89
Place of purchase: Duane Reade at Union Square
Cost per pound: $8.89
Type of chocolate: Milk
Details: Solid chocolate, one-sided, flat back, comes rabbit-shaped white plastic trough, in a pink box with a cellophane window

Tasting Notes

The Torres bunny is of very high quality dark chocolate, with a smooth mouth feel and dark saturated chocolate flavor, but totally moderated bitterness. The hollowness is annoying, making it difficult to break pieces of desired size.

The Stover bunny is an American classic, an agreeable milk chocolate that has a smoothness that suggests extensive conching; nevertheless, the bunny tastes too sweet and has a slight artificial aftertaste probably owing to vanillin.

Conclusions

The Stover bunny is a great deal, costing a quarter of what the Torres bunny costs per pound of chocolate. The Stover bunny is bigger, and etched with a more playful bunny image, while the Torres looks like it was cadged from a late-19th century steel engraving. Some further issues: Is fancy chocolate wasted on kids? Wouldn't they prefer the larger, more childish bunny? Don't kids like milk chocolate better than dark chocolate? Is it better to introduce kids to good chocolate at an early age, so that you never catch them eating a foul, gritty, burned-tasting Hershey bar?

Next: The Decision


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