The smooth and pale chocolate has a fruity, floral profile. We tasted juicy sour cherries with a sherbet edge. A delicate astringency mixes with the lighter fruit notes. Sharper flavours give way to a sweet finish with just a hint of spice. The naturally buttery bar has a creamy mouthfeel and nice melt which allows the waves of flavour to slowly wash over your tongue.
ABOUT THE MAKER
From making chocolate in their apartment to running a chocolate factory and chocolate-cafe, Anna Davies and Robbie Stout have transformed Ritual into one of the best known craft chocolate makers in the US. The pair met around the same time they were discovering the delights of small-batch, fine chocolate, and are motivated by “improving quality of life through chocolate” – from serving the cacao growers to the chocolate lovers.
In the early twentieth century, the Puro Nacional, a variety of exceptional Ecuadorian cocoa bean, was declared to be extinct after disease ravaged the area. But in 2007, two Americans who were supplying equipment to local mining companies in the Marañon Valley, Peru, stumbled upon a strange cocoa tree. They sent the fruit off for DNA analysis, which confirmed that the new beans were pure strains of the old Puro Nacional. This exceptionally rare cocoa bean is now cultivated in the valley and imbues each chocolate bar with beautiful elegance and astonishing complexity.
Anna and Robbie first tried a batch of these newly discovered beans in 2010. They described this as being ‘the best chocolate we had ever tried’ at the time. From then on they were dedicated to getting their hands on more of these beans. They wrote to the Pearson family who had discovered the beans and asked for some. After three years a great deal of begging and sending them a number of samples to prove they were worthy, Anna and Robbie were finally able to get hold of these rare beans.
Taste the bar for yourself and you will see that Ritual’s Maranon was well worth the three year wait for beans!