Ambanja, Sambirano Valley, Madagascar - Bertil Akesson
The island of Madagascar, off the south-east coast of Africa, is a highly interesting origin for chocolate. Most of its cocoa is grown in the Ambanja region in the north of the country. Most famous of all terroirs for Madagascan cocoa is the Sambirano River Valley, located on the northern tip of the island. Sambirano’s unique combination of a Criollo-Trinitario blend of cocoa plants, climate, and soil make for chocolate that is both warm and acidic.
We are lucky to have been able to source organic cocoa beans from Bertil Akesson, whose 2300 hectare family estate, close to Ambanja in the Sambirano Valley, has produced world-famous aromatic cocoa since 1920.
The roasting challenge with Madagascan beans is to bring out the citrus flavours while avoiding and overly acidic chocolate. Our 72% bar has a medium roast with a long conch and yields a chocolate with subtle fruity-sweet tartness and high notes of citrus and yellow fruits; the true taste of the very best from Madagascar.
We make three bars with these beans from Madagascar:
Madagascar - Milk 58% - International Chocolate Awards 2015 European Silver & 3 World Golds - Academy of Chocolate 2015 Bronze - Great Taste Awards 2015 Top 50 Foods & 3 Gold Stars
Madagascar Criollo 74% - International Chocolate Awards 2015 European Silver & World Bronze - Academy of Chocolate 2015 Silver - Great Taste Awards 2015 3 Gold Stars. The Criollo cocoa beans used to make this unique chocolate have recently been awarded Heirloom Cacao Preservation (HCP) status. To find out more about HCP please visit the Fine Chocolate Industry Association website.