Ritual Chocolate Peru Maranon 75% 89.5/100

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This bar is made with pure Nacional cacao from the remote Maranon river valley in the Cajamarca region of Peru. Once harvested and processed these beans are shipped to Park City, Utah where Ritual Chocolate use traditional European methods to turn them into one of their chocolate bars. Continue reading

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Best of Paris: Coffee & Chocolate Part 2

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After an unbelievably good breakfast at Hardware Societe, featuring espresso based beverages from Melbourne based coffee roasters Padre Coffee, we made our way across town to 10 Belles for some filter coffee. Continue reading

Chocolat Chapon Mexico Soconusco 75% 90/100

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From the most southerly of the Mexican states, Chiapas, this ancient cacao shares its lands with ancient Mayan structures and the timeless rainforest. To call this ancient may be overstepping, but this is a classical cacao, having been grown throughout history for its high quality and notable prestige. One of the first prized cacaos it was shipped to Spain and the rest of Europe due to its reputation amongst the native elite. Difficult to grow with weaknesses to both pest and disease this cacao has now been revived. After sourcing the beans Patrice Chapon begins the process of roasting and preparing the beans at his chocolate workshop, east of Paris in Chelles, before turning them into one of his chocolate bars. Continue reading

Chocolat Chapon Venezuela Chuao 75% 93.5/100

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Formerly the exclusive purchasing right of Amedei, Chuao has been open to other bean to bar producers for a while now. While Domori’s Chuao is grown at Hacienda San Jose, this bar is from the Chuao growing region on the northern coast of Venezeula, part of the Parque Nacional Henri Pittier. Chuao these days is best described as both a variety and a village with some pods having left the village to be produced elsewhere in Venezuela. This cacao comes with a reputation for having won a glutton of awards and so bar makers run a risk with these beans of not living up to their reputation. After sourcing the beans Patrice Chapon begins the process of roasting and preparing the beans at his chocolate workshop, east of Paris in Chelles, before turning them into one of his chocolate bars. Continue reading

Chocolat Chapon Venezuela Porcelana 73% 90.5/100

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Porcelana or white criollo (different from white nacional) grows south west of Lake Maracaibo in the Venezuelan region of Zulia and is considered to be one of the best varieties of cacao. Porcelana beans grow white rather than the purple and brown hues we traditionally associate with cacao beans due to the absence of the flavonoid anthocyanin, which is responsible for the purple colour. This absence of anthocyanin is responsible for the lack of bitterness in fine white criollo chocolate, which makes it highly desirable in terms of flavour. This lack of anthocyanin and Porcelana’s ancient heritage come at a cost however, with ancient white criollo strains being susceptible to pests and disease, thankfully though Venezuela has never shyed away from growing vulnerable, low yielding, but flavourful cacao strains. With less than a 1000kg of this Porcelana produced every year it makes every Porcelana bar made a rarity. After sourcing the beans Patrice Chapon begins the process of roasting and preparing the beans at his chocolate workshop, east of Paris in Chelles, before turning them into one of his chocolate bars. Continue reading

Chocolat Chapon Nicaragua Chuno 70% 91/100

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Mostly found in northern Nicaragua, Chuno varieties can also be found all over the cacao growing regions of Nicaragua. After sourcing the beans Patrice Chapon begins the process of roasting and preparing the beans at his chocolate workshop, east of Paris in Chelles, before turning them into one of his chocolate bars. Continue reading

Chocolat Chapon Venezuela Macuare Guasare 72% 92/100

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West of Puerto Cabello and east of Maracaibo, Macuare sits on the northern Venezuelan coast by the Parque Nacional Juan Crisotomo Falcon, not far from where Porcelana can be found. Guasare on the other hand sits in the far north west of Venezuela, west of Lake Maracaibo where it grows what’s considered to be the ‘father of all criollos’, although they also grow trinitario there now as well. This bar is made from a blend of these two varieties of rare old white criollos. After sourcing the beans Patrice Chapon begins the process of roasting and preparing the beans at his chocolate workshop, east of Paris in Chelles, before turning them into one of his chocolate bars. Continue reading