All three of our Taste Like a Pro Choficionado Taste Packs in one bundle!
Take your love of fine chocolate to the next level and taste the difference that cacao butter, pod colour and roast can have on fine chocolate.
6 bars, 3 tasting cards, 6 A4 sides of insights, it's like havingn Iris and Bob in your room, without having to have us in your room.
Each pack has fun guided tasting notes - a great way to share your love of fine chocolate with others.
Each bar is 56gr/ 2oz.
Choficionado 1,2 & 3 - Tasting Party Bundle
Harvest day on Don Fortunato’s farm is special, since this is the site of the Mother Tree. This tree possesses DNA identical to the genetic marker for Pure Nacional found in the 5,300 entry, world genetic database. Don Fortunato and his wife participate in the harvest and, utilizing machetes, open pods and assist in removing the beans. Sealed buckets with wet cacao beans are transported on Fortunato’s burro from the farm, to the family home, weighed on a digital scale and Don Fortunato is paid immediately before the fermentation process begins that same day.
Chocolate Thought to Be Extinct Rediscovered in PeruPure Nacional, a variety of cacao, the plant used to make chocolate, that was oncethought to be extinct, has been rediscovered in Peru. Pure Nacional, with its complex fruit andfloral flavors, once dominated the fine chocolate market worldwide. In 1916, diseases struckthe Pure Nacional population in Ecuador and within three years 95% of the trees weredestroyed. The prized chocolate was thought to be lost, until now.The chocolate has been rediscovered growing in Peru. The United States Department ofAgriculture (USDA), the world's foremost genetics laboratory for the DNA testing of cacao,confirmed this discovery and after two years of hard work chocolate is being produced fromthese precious plants.Late in 2007, Dan Pearson and Brian Horsley were sourcing fruit in Peru's Marañón Canyonwhen they discovered cacao trees growing on small isolated farms in a remotehorseshoeshaped canyon surrounded by 6,000-feet canyon walls. The trees were growingfootballshaped pods filled with a rare mix of 40% white beans and 60% purple beans in thesame pods, or in some cases, the pods were completely filled with white beans. Familiar withonly purple beans, they were curious about the rare white beans and sent leaf samples to theUSDA for testing."When Dr. Meinhardt called with genetic test results and asked, 'Are you sitting down?' I knewwe had found something special," said Pearson.Dr. Lyndel Meinhardt, Lead Researcher and Dr. Dapeng Zhang, Lead Geneticist from theUSDA Sustainable Perennial Crops Laboratory in Beltsville, Maryland, analyzed the geneticstructure of the beans and found that they were Pure Nacional plants native to Peru. "Theinternational cacao database has 5,300 entries. None are Pure Nacional with white beans.Cacao pods with 40% and 100% white Pure Nacional beans are an unprecedenteddiscovery," said Meinhardt.They tested random leaf samples from various trees throughout the Marañón Canyon andconfirmed that the Pure Nacional plants were growing throughout the canyon. Dapeng said,"We are excited about this confirmation. It means that these cacao trees were indigenous toPeru. They are not exotic introductions from somewhere else."The high canyon walls in the Marañón Canyon created a unique micro-climate for the trees.The trees thrive at some of the highest altitudes ever reported for cacao, between 3,500 and4,100 feet. Horsley lives with the farmers and worked with them to turn the unique cacao intochocolate. The beans needed to be transported first by foot, then burro, then motorcycle andfinally by all-terrain vehicle.Horsley said, "The small farmers and I had to learn quality practices together. White beansmust be fermented and dried differently than purple beans, but it is unknowable in advancewhich is which," After two years, several site visits by fermenting and drying specialists,independent laboratory testing and 81 fermenting and drying trials, they found theanswers to processing the rare beans and founded maranonchocolate.com to offer theirexclusive product to pastry chefs, chocolatiers and their customers.Pearson traveled to Switzerland to have the beans made into one-of-a-kind chocolate by arenowned Swiss chocolate maker who found the white beans added a nutty flavor to theNacional fruit and flora profile. The chocolate maker was recommended by Franz Ziegler ofZiegler Consulting and Paul Edward of Chef Rubber. Ziegler is an award-winning author andwas named Pastry Chef of the Year in 2008 by the World Pastry Team Championship, wherehe has served as head judge since 2006. Edward is a pastry chef who has guided the projectsince he made the first Pure Nacional chocolate samples.Ziegler and his colleague Paul Edward of Chef Rubber said, "In our combined 50 years ofworking with chocolate, we have never tasted flavors like this. We had to experience thisourselves, so we both traveled to Peru, met the farm families, saw the trees, the whitebeans, the genetics tests and then watched the next evolution in post-harvest processing thatthey developed. We saw the past and the future of chocolate."
You can buy and hold in your hands, the rarest chocolate in the world. In a remote Marañón River Canyon of Peru, mother nature or an ancient civilization has hidden this chocolate treasure. For centuries these trees, growing in an isolated micro-climate at twice the normal altitude,have been creating beans with flavors which no one has ever tasted.......Until Now. These recently discovered trees had ancestral relatives, which once grew on the flat plains near the Pacific Ocean, in Ecuador. The natives called these all dark brown beans, Pure Nacional. In the 1820's a Swiss chocolate maker discovered these remarkable beans and took them to Europe and America. Within a decade, chocolate made from Pure Nacional beans, dominated the gourmet chocolate market in Europe and the US. The chocolate was famous for the aromas and flavors of delicate flowers and fruits. Suddenly diseases struck the trees and by 1919, Pure Nacional chocolate disappeared. Nearly 100 years later, these thought-to-be-extincttrees were rediscovered, near where the Marañón River forms the headwaters of the mighty Amazon River. During the centuries of growing in isolation, these rare beans evolved. To the amazement of the scientists, pure white beans are now growing in the same pods with the dark brown beans. This creates an entirely new flavor profile. The pure white beans add a nutty flavor to the traditional flower and fruit flavors, which had made the chocolate famous, nearly 100 years ago. The United States Department of Agriculture performed genetic testing of these trees and reported, “This Pure Nacional variety is genetically identical to its Ecuadorian ancestors. However, the white beans growing in the same pods with the dark brown beans is an unprecedented discovery. This combination of Pure Nacional beans exists nowhere else on the planet.” The limited number of trees grow on small farms in this remote canyon, which has no infrastructure. Once harvested, the beans are brought out by foot, by burro and by motorcycle to a location within this Marañón Canyon. There the beans are fermented and dried with a special process developed to protect these rare delicate aromas and flavors. The Pure Nacional white and dark brown beans then travel to our cottage laboratory workshop in sunny Dorset, where we craft the chocolate. We work diligently, carefully observing results and continually refining our process to protect the delicate nut, flower and fruit flavors, as we slowly turn the beans into the chocolate you see here. The bean is named after Don Fortunato, the farmer where the purest trees were found. Enjoy the aromas and flavors of the rarest chocolate in the world, which no one has ever tasted....... Until Now.
Link to Reuters article on our Pure Nacionale
Organic heirloom Fortunato No.4 (Pure Nacional) Cacao bean, organic cane sugar