Our newest project is a bar from La Masica farm in Department of Atlantida, Honduras. It's a lowland farm at about 100' ASL located on the northern coast of Honduras, and operated by FHIA, a non-profit agricultural organization. The farm primarily functions as a gene bank and research center with some small commercial production. Dan O'Doherty, a cacao expert out of Hawaii, has begun collaborating with La Masica on post-harvest processing techniques to drastically improve their cacao from something that with serious defects which sold at only slightly above market price to something truly world-class which now demands a high premium. When he sent us samples of the results, we were elated; the quality of the processing is far above almost anything we've seen. We taste citrus rind, mango, spices, and very clean acidity. It's really good.
The beans for the Hispaniola are fermented and sun-dried. The cacao is very complex, because the Dominican Republic generally has a lot of genetic diversity in the types of cacao trees on each farm. This bar has lovely, balanced flavors of citrus, red fruit, cocoa and gingerbread.
In the southern reaches of the Amazon basin along Bolivia's Rio Beni grows a rare, wild cacao. Massive trees are found along the riverbanks, where their fruits are gathered by cacao "hunters" who travel by boat in search of this rarity. The pods of this unique genotype of cacao are very small, some not larger than a lemon. Hidden inside them, tiny cacao beans hold surprising flavors of plum, jasmine, banana, and nuts. Through much effort, we managed to procure a small lot of this coveted cacao silvestre, worthy of a limited edition release. As with all of our chocolate, this bar contains only two ingredients - cacao beans and cane sugar - delivering a pure, undiluted expression of this extraordinary cacao. We hope you enjoy the fruits of our labor.
Single-Origin Chocolate from the Akesson Plantation in Madagascar. This growing region’s trees are derived from Venezuelan stock, but due to terroir and processing, has a remarkably different flavor. There are strong criollo genetics in some of the trees on this plantation and along with them come typical characteristics found in very criollo-ish cacao, including light seeds and a wonderful, complex flavor profile. It has been carefully roasted, ground, refined, and conched to perfection in small batches. Bright flavors of plums, citrus, berry, and cedar.