The Zorzal cacao beans are farmed and processed by Reserva Zorzal and their neighbouring farms. Reserva Zorzal is in fact a large bird sanctuary – protecting the wildlife habitat for the Bicknell’s Thrush – in the Duarte province of the Dominican Republic. Its mission is to work to reforest endangered lands, protecting the birds as well as cultivating cacao and macadamia nuts. Burrowed within the bird sanctuary is Zorzal Cacao, a 130-acre fermentary and organic cocoa farm.
Nate discovered this fine cacao farm when on a visit to the Dominican Republic in 2014. During this time, Zorzal Reserva was entering its second year of exporting its cacao. Nate took a sample of the cacao back to Brooklyn, crafted a small test batch of chocolate from it. He and the team loved it. And ever since, Raaka has been buying the beans from Zorzal Reserva. The entire team of the Zorzal Reserva have also visited Raaka in Brooklyn to see the factory and production and to meet the Raaka team.
Raaka have crafted this 71% dark chocolate bar from cacao beans grown by Zorzal Cacao in the Dominican Republic, and liberally sprinkled it with Peruvian pink salt sourced from Salt of The Earth Co.
This deep dark chocolate has a strong cocoa body, with a soft fruity twist. The chocolate is so perfectly balanced, gifting the palate with both high fruity notes – think berries – and low nutty and chocolatey tones. And the salt? It adds delightful crunchiness and it quite simply adds another dimension flavour wise.