A blind taste test of Mast Brothers chocolate

✔ Poll

Un-Mast! A blind taste-test of maligned Williamsburg chocolate

A hard pass: Ace reporter Colin Mixson rejected all three — but said he hates all chocolate.
The Brooklyn Paper
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Eleven out of 13 people agree — Mast Brothers chocolate really isn’t worth the money!

The foodie world is in meltdown after chocolate professionals accused the Williamsburg candy company of fooling people into paying top dollar for a “crappy hipster” product via fancy packaging and clever marketing.

But can the Average Joe even tell? We blindfolded Brooklyn Paper staffers and fed them Mast Brothers and two other brands under strict lab conditions — and the results were damning.

“I wouldn’t eat that if I was dying,” said one taster after eating a piece of Mast Brothers Dark Chocolate ($7.99 from Union Market on Court Street). “I wouldn’t give it to my worst enemy.”

The majority of tasters preferred fancy French chocolatier Michel Cluizel’s Noir De Cacao ($6.99), though four human guinea pigs could not get enough of Hershey’s Special Dark ($1.29). Just two community news professionals selected Mast Brothers as their top pick.

The cacao company is in the firing line after a food blogger published a series of scathing posts claiming the chocolate was not only overpriced and overhyped, but that the company had in its early days made its so-called “bean-to-bar” product by re-melting chocolate bought elsewhere. The owners eventually conceded the latter charge, but claim their product is now made from scratch and top notch.

And at least a couple of journalists agree that the be-bearded brothers are doing good work at their Navy Yard factory.

“It seems to have more flavors and layers to it,” said one reviewer.

But several others complained the chocolate came with a lingering aftertaste, which they just couldn’t get out of their mouths.

“It kind of stays with you a little bit too long,” said one self-professed “chocolate guy.”

Perhaps the greatest revelation of the trial, however, was that some still prefer the Great American Chocolate Bar in this artisanal age.

Reach reporter Lauren Gill at or by calling (718) 260–2511.

Reader poll

What do you think? Is Mast Brothers worth the price tag — or would you prefer Hershey's, too?

Updated 10:17 pm, July 9, 2018
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Reasonable discourse

Vema from Wallabout says:
While I do enjoy some of their chocolate I certainly cannot afford it more than a couple of times a year. Why a chocolate bar should be $9 is totally beyond me.
Dec. 23, 2015, 10:34 am
Mike L from Kensington says:
I'll take the yummy dark chocolates from my local health food store for $3.99 any day over the ridiculous price of Mast brothers. That's nuts!!
Dec. 23, 2015, 11:50 am
Trollerskates from Moving Target says:
The poll should have an, no idea how it tastes, no way I'm paying that much for a chocolate bar option. Plenty of top notch product for nowhere near that price.
Dec. 23, 2015, 10:46 pm
Rufus Leaking from BH says:
But but they have beards, and they aren't really brothers, and and and it's worth it 'cause it's artisanal and it's fair trade, and sustainable - THAT makes it worth it!
Dec. 24, 2015, 10:52 am
Esther Williamsburg from Williamsburg says:
Mast bros chocolate had dropped their very best flavors: Their Black Truffle Bar was hands down one of the best chocolate bars anywhere. The fact that they are accused of using Varlhona in their bars isn't really that terrible but for a company that prides itself on serious chocolate for connoisseurs making bars of only 70% is sinful!! Bring back the 80% cacao chocolate!!
Dec. 24, 2015, 5:42 pm
Brian from Greenpoint says:
What's the point in dedicating time, money, effort into anything of a lesser quality? Mast chocolates are better than sex.
Jan. 4, 2016, 8:53 pm

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