Interview with Isobel Carse of Dormouse Chocolates

This week I’m jumping across the pond once more so to speak, to interview Isobel Carse of Dormouse Chocolates; the first bean-to-bar maker in Manchester, England.  Dormouse makes micro-batches of craft chocolate that skip the machines for a rarely done hand-tempering of the chocolate on marble.

Dormouse was the very first monthly chocolate subscription I ever signed up for, and did I mention they just picked up three more Academy of Chocolate Awards in 2017-including a gold for their Guatemala 51.5% milk chocolate bar? Congrats!

Pic of Karen and Isobel of Dormouse chocolate Continue reading “Interview with Isobel Carse of Dormouse Chocolates”

Cacao Prieto 72% Organic Criollo Dominican Republic Dark Chocolate Bar Review

Cacao Prieto craft chocolate was founded by Daniel Prieto Preston. The Prieto family owns Coralina Farms in the Dominican Republic, where all the organic cacao comes from to make Cacao Prieto bars.  Even the organic sugar they use comes from the Dominican Republic.  Their bean-to-bar chocolate is made in Red Hook, Brooklyn, NY, where they also make cacao-based liqueurs and rums.

The bar I tried is their original 72% Criollo Dominican organic dark chocolate bar made from single-origin Dominican Republic Criollo cacao and organic raw cane sugar.

Cacao Prieto 72% Domincan bar pic taken at Fort Worden, Port Townsend, WA Continue reading “Cacao Prieto 72% Organic Criollo Dominican Republic Dark Chocolate Bar Review”

Interview with Dom Ramsey Founder & Chocolate Maker of Damson Chocolate

Dom Ramsey is both the founder and bean-to-bar craft chocolate maker at Damson Chocolate in London, England.  Dom is an Academy of Chocolate Awards  judge of the filled chocolates category and author of the book Chocolate: Indulge Your Inner Chocoholic.  Dom was also a co-founder of Cocoa Runners and World Chocolate Guide. He is also a founder and editor of Chocablog (http://www.chocablog.com/).

I’ve had a chance to try several Damson Chocolate bars and I highly recommend them!  Lately requests for recommendations on bars made from beans from the Philippines have been popping up on Instagram, so I suggest trying Damson’s 70% Philippines Kablon Farms bar if you can find it.

Dom Ramsey Founder & Chocolate Maker of Damson Chocolate Continue reading “Interview with Dom Ramsey Founder & Chocolate Maker of Damson Chocolate”

Chocolat Bonnat 75% Porcelana Venezuela Dark Chocolate Bar Review

Chocolat Bonnat is a craft chocolate maker located in France.  Besides the fact that the bars are always amazing I also love that they are 3.50 ounces.  I feel all giddy opening a bar of that size.

This time I tried the 75% Porcelana which comes from Venezuela.  Porcelana is typically listed as a rarer cacao bean from the Criollo variety of beans with delicate flavor characteristics.

Chocolat Bonnat Porcelana bar pictured at the start of the Race to Alaska 2017 in Port Townsend, WA Continue reading “Chocolat Bonnat 75% Porcelana Venezuela Dark Chocolate Bar Review”

Dick Taylor Maple Coconut Chocolate Bar Review

Dick Taylor Craft Chocolate was founded by Adam Dick & Dustin Taylor, and is located in Eureka, California.  This maple coconut bar is the 10th bar of theirs that I’ve had (plus two of their drinking chocolates).  This particular bar is 72% Belize with coconut caramelized in maple syrup and sea salt.

Dick Taylor Craft Chocolate Maple Coconut Bar Pic Taken in Victoria, British Columbia. Continue reading “Dick Taylor Maple Coconut Chocolate Bar Review”

Letterpress Chocolate UCAYALI Private Reserve 70% Dark Chocolate Bar Review

I was at The Chocolate Project in Victoria, British Colombia last weekend where I picked up this Letterpress Chocolate UCAYALI Private Reserve 70% dark chocolate bar that lists batch 1 on the back.

Letterpress Chocolate is a small batch craft chocolate maker founded in 2014 that is located in Los Angeles, CA.  They also happen to be the first bean-to-bar maker established there.  (I first tried Letterpress Chocolate thanks to a chocolate bar swap with My Year in Chocolate).

This particular bar is made from Ucayali River Cacao located in Peru.

Congrats to Letterpress Chocolate for this bar winning gold for packaging design in the 2017 Academy of Chocolate Awards!

Color:  Medium/dark brown.

Nose:  A subtle, delicate nose of graham cracker, red fruit, and faint orange soda.

 

Pic of Letterpress Chocolate’s UCAUALI bar in Victoria, B.C. Continue reading “Letterpress Chocolate UCAYALI Private Reserve 70% Dark Chocolate Bar Review”

Interview of Cynthia Leung of Soma Chocolatemaker with Victoria Cooksey

David Castellan and Cynthia Leung of Soma Chocolatemaker at Slow Move Picnic 

Soma Chocolatemaker is a craft chocolate maker located in Toronto, Canada that was founded by David Castellan and Cynthia Leung.  This interview focuses on answers given by Cynthia Leung.

I’ve had the pleasure of devouring many of Soma Chocolatemaker bars.  I first discovered Soma when Ecole Chocolat posted a picture of Soma’s Dark Side of the Mug drinking chocolate on instagram (https://www.instagram.com/ecolechocolat/?hl=en) and I knew I had to have it! So I placed my first Soma order, and the rest is history.

Throughout this interview you will find pictures of just a few of the Soma bars I’ve had concluding with their Milk Old School bar which (spoiler alert) tied for first place in the 2016 Dark Matters Chocolate Awards.

Chocolate makers are extremely busy people, so a huge thank you to Cynthia for taking the time from her busy schedule to answer my questions.  I am truly grateful, and look forward to seeking out  all of Soma’s future creations!

Soma Chocolatemaker Dark Side of the Mug Drinking Chocolate

Victoria Cooksey:   What was your first experience with fine chocolate, and what made you decided to turn your passion for chocolate into a full time career?

Cynthia Leung:   We were reading Maricel’s first edition of her book, “Taste of Chocolate” at home and eating a bar of Domori’s Madagascar. In combination this was our portal into the world of cacao. Continue reading “Interview of Cynthia Leung of Soma Chocolatemaker with Victoria Cooksey”