A sweet step back in time

To most of us chocolate is like gold! So it won't surprise you to learn that back in the 1500's the Indian Aztecs used cocoa beans as currency, and the rest, as we say, is history!

 

Spanish explorer Hernando Cortez made this delicious discovery at a time when chocolate was consumed as a cold, foamy, spicy bitter mixture of cocoa paste, water and spices. During the 1600's the French and British nobility refined the chocolatey drink by adding cinnamon, cloves or wine.

 

There's no doubt that these guys were onto something and it wasn't long (well a couple of centuries) before Chocolate began to look more like the chocolate we know today. During the 1700's the British developed the processing and manufacturingf techniques (many of which are still used today) that gave chocolate its solid form. Key advances in these techniques were made during the 1800's and today, they remain the crucial factors in ultimately determining the taste of fine chocolate.

 

As one of the world’s most adored sweet indulgences, chocolate owes its popularity to the humble cocoa bean. There are three varieties of cocoa bean grown in specific regions of the world and just as grapes are to wine, each variety has its own unique taste. 

 

The ultimate quality and taste of chocolate comes down to the way it is fermented, roasted, ground and conched.  A lot of work – but I’m sure you’ll agree - oh so worth it!