Often the internationalisation of chocolate detracts from the origin of the main ingredient. Cacao will be grown in one country and shipped as part-processed cocoa beans to Amsterdam and then to some factory in Europe. It may similarly end up at a port on either the east or west coast of America, where again it'll be taken to some obscure factory to be turned into chocolate. The story is different with this chocolate in that the entire chocolate making process was begun and ended in Madagascar. The local economies which witness some of the greatest levels of poverty in the world therefore benefit from your enjoyment. The cacao tree planters, harvesters, fermenters, roasters and the rest are all employed in Madagascar which means a greater amount of your spend goes to the people that most need it.
Often ethics can just be a marketing ploy and the final chocolate is none-the-better for it. Just look at the largest companies in the world jumping on the Fair Trade bandwagon. But here the "impact" of this chocolate is "four times that of fair trade cocoa". So if Fair Trade and ethics is important to you then Madecasse should be at the top of your chocolate maker list to try.
The cacao used in this chocolate comes from the highly respected Sambirano Valley and is a blend of Criollo and Amelonado and at the 80% level you get far more of the natural intensity of the fermented cocoa bean than at lower levels. This is an earthy, fruity chocolate that has so many of the characteristics of the Menakao at this level that the similarity is uncanny, but not so unexpected.
The slightly heavy roast delivers a slight nut-edge that holds the sharper, plum-like flavours up and allows them to bask in the glory they deserve. This chocolate may not have the rolling, fascinating flavours of other chocolate from the region. But the intensity is something to behold and provides serves to jolt your taste buds.
|Dietary||May contain traces of nuts.|
|Ingredients||Cocoa beans, sugar, cocoa butter|
|Origin||Sambirano Valley (also see Benoit Nihant, Domori, Solstice Chocolate, Rózsavölgyi Csokolade amongst others)|
|Best Before||27 June 2015|
|Maker's Tasting Notes||Strong and complex. A serious dark bar, with hints of blueberry at the end.|
|Ethics||"Four times the impact of fair trade cocoa"|