Before they can be made into chocolate, cocoa beans are fermented for up to a week in large wooden crates or banana leaf parcels. They are traditionally fermented in the fruit’s natural pulp, the sugars of which react with yeasts and bacteria to kill the seeds and create the amazing flavour profiles we all know and love.
But Pump Street have taken their expertise in baking and applied it to the fermentation process in this first-of-a-kind experiment. Chris teamed up with Tulloch Estate’s Roger Turner to introduce a sourdough starter into the fermentation mix, which results in more controlled microbial reactions and could revolutionise the way fermentation is done in the future.
Most importantly, the benefits are immediately evident in the finished product. It’s an immediately smooth and creamy bar, with notes of raisins, toffee, and hints of toasted hazelnut. The acidity is delicately balanced, giving a purer and more consistent expression of Roger’s fine-flavour beans.
ABOUT THE MAKER
After a long and successful career at IBM, international jet-setter Chris Brennan briefly retired before deciding to pioneer the making of sourdough and other breads in his idyllic countryside bakery in Orford, Suffolk. About a decade later, he and his daughter Joanna decided to delve into crafting award-winning chocolate in their eponymous bakery situated on Pump Street, and have won numerous awards for both their chocolates and their innovative packaging.
The beans in this bar are sourced from Roger Turner’s family-run Tulloch Estate, situated about 20 miles northwest of Kingston.