Welcome to our February 2018 Collection.
Every month we want to continue to bring you the best selection of new, world-class craft chocolate bars, so that you can delve deeper into the world of artisan, single-origin, and small-batch chocolate. This month we’ve selected three bars from some of the exciting makers in our Library and we also have a new maker to introduce you to.
Beginning with the new, we would like to welcome MIA chocolate to Cocoa Runners. MIA stands for ‘Made in Africa’ and the bar not only uses Madagascan cacao and local ingredients, it is crafted the country too. MIA has just launched so we are really delighted to share these bars with you.
Next we’ve a dark from Belvie. Marc and Jannie of Belvie work with farmers across different Vietnamese provinces to create the best possible chocolate. Like MIA, Blevie makes its bars at source, but in Vietnam not Madagascar!
Then we’ve a bar from Domori. The Italian chocolate maker was one of the first to start sourcing its own beans and crafting its bars according to each origin’s flavours. Today Domori is renowned throughout the world.
Finally we finish closer to home with a bar crafted in the UK by Pump Street. The cacao comes all the way from Ecuador to Orford in Suffolk where Chris, Joanna and Rob have crafted it into their signature buttery chocolate.
We hope you enjoy this month’s selection.
We have known Brett Beach for years, since he was one of the founding partners of Madecasse. Late last year we met up with Brett to find out more about his new adventure. He is still committed to creating delicious chocolate at source and giving back to the local communities as much as possible. Brett has started a new food company which, although he has kicked off with a chocolate, he hopes to extend to other craft foods made at origin.
MIA stands for Made In Africa. Just launched at the end of 2017, the company is dedicated to sourcing ingredients and making its chocolate at source to help local communities. On top of this MIA has created its own African community programme 1 for Change. MIA is donating 1% of all sales to the programme which is investing in local development projects to improve the whole community’s livelihood.
You can try MIA’s Madagascan Dark Chocolate from this month’s box here, and find the rest of MIA’s bars in the Chocolate Library here.
We began working with Belvie last year, after we received an email from Jannie out of the blue. While the number of craft chocolate makers is still growing, it is always a pleasure to discover new bars. And when the bars taste as good as Belvie’s and the beans have been as carefully sourced, our pleasure only increases! And when Belvie’s talent was recognised at the Academy of Chocolate Awards 2017 who can blame us for being truly delighted.
Marc and Jannie of Belvie have always described themselves and being ‘chocolate addicts’. In the beginning, they made their own chocolate just at home until they wanted to share their passion with the rest of the world, and that is when Belvie was born. Their chocolate is a combination of Belgian technology, in-depth chocolate knowledge, incredibly self-sourced beans form Vietnam and their love for chocolate. The chocolate bar included in this box won Gold at the Academy of Chocolate Awards 2017.
You can try Belvie’s Lam Dong Dark from this month’s box here, or you can find the rest of Belvie’s bars in the Chocolate Library here.
Domori have become something of a household name in chocolate, and particularly in its native Italy. Since Gianluca Franzoni started the company it has grown and grown, selling an ever-increasing variety of chocolates and confection. But despite this success, Domori has stuck to its roots and continues to work with individual farmers and growers to produce its range of single-origin bars.
Domori’s Tanzanian bar uses cacao from the Kokoa Kamili cooperative in the Kilombero Valley. Before founding Domori, Gianluca Franzoni spent three years in Venezuela. Here he worked with the cocoa harvests, studying the different cocoa varieties and trying to preserve some of the rarest varieties cocoa beans. This passion for quality beans and natural ingredients is the core of Domori’s philosophy.
One of the first people to start crafting chocolate from the bean in the UK, Pump Street are now making a name for themselves across the pond too. Still based in Orford, Suffolk, Pump Street is always experimenting with new flavour inclusions and origins. And we are always excited to see what the team will come up with next.
The father and daughter team of Chris & Joanna Brennan set up Pump Street Bakery originally as a sourdough bakery in 2010. Four years ago they began experimenting with craft chocolate, partnering with Rob Sledmore (an ex-Tank commander). Pump Street has won numerous awards in the UK and across the pond. For this bar, Chris sourced the cacao from his friend Samuel von Rutte. Sam runs the Hacienda Limon farm in the Guayas Basin in Ecuador and is famous for his studies of the genetics of Nacional Arriba cocoa beans.