The wonderful thing about my passion for real chocolate, is that the adventure never ends. However far I travel, there’s always a universe of undiscovered flavour pairings for my single estate cacaos just waiting for me to find them, so I can share them with you!
This is why I love being able to make my limited edition chocolates, my Magnificent Creations. I am constantly infusing and soaking, dicing and drying, mixing and tasting to create the chocolates of my dreams.
MY EXCLUSIVE CHOCOLATES - THE JOY AND THE ARTIST’S STRUGGLE
I am obsessed with flavour. Everywhere I go I am looking out for new ingredients or new ways of preparing ingredients or new alcohols to soak them in. From creamy Peruvian lucuma, to green tea toasted with rice with its wonderful caramel notes.
My limited edition chocolates are inspired by visits to markets, cocktail bars and restaurants, and meetings with exceptional artisan producers. I’ve been taken foraging in south west France and visited micro distilleries around the world. I’d get back to the factory with my new discoveries and start experimenting. I have jars of everything from sloes to kelp soaking in amazing alcohols.
Throughout the years I’ve conjured up countless new flavour pairings and chocolates. The problem was that these special and unique chocolates weren’t going to be something I could make in my factory and sell to shops…. The ingredients were either too expensive, too hard to get hold of, or the type of ingredients means that the chocolate would need to be made by hand. Now, make no mistake - there are few activities in this world I love more than creating handmade chocolate bars - the problem is that I have only one pair of hands!
Frustrated for years at being unable to share my creations, during Lockdown I had a brainwave that allowed me to unleash the wildest corners of my imagination. My Chocolate Tasting Club was born!
THE BEAUTY OF SINGLE-ESTATE CACAO
FOR PAIRING WITH UNIQUE FLAVOURS
Being a Cacao Farmer first and chocolatier second, I think of the flavours in my chocolates in the same way that wine tasters talk about wine.
My passion for discovering the finest single-estate cacaos from all over the world means I have at my disposal beans with unique and wildly varying flavour profiles. This is what makes them so interesting and perfect for very specific and special flavour pairings like these. One ingredient may go perfectly with a nutty bean but clash wildly with a bean with citrus notes.
The vast majority of chocolates are industrially made from very neutral tasting beans and contain both lecithin and vanilla. I am one of the few chocolate makers in the UK making chocolate from bean to bar so I can keep my flavours totally pure.
I’ve now made over 50 of these special limited edition chocolates! I can hardly believe it, they are all truly a labour of love but of course, I have a few favourites...
MISO & MIRIN
AWAJUN 70 DARK CHOCOLATE WITH MISO AND RAISINS SOAKED IN MIRIN
Salted caramel has become so incredibly popular because it is that wonderful combination of salty and sweet. Here the barley miso provides an umami take on salty, and the mirin-soaked raisins bring bursts of floral, fruity sweetness. This is one joyful bar of chocolate.
CREAMY WHITE CHOCOLATE WITH HOJICHA TEA
Prepare to be blown away by exuberant Hojicha. Unique in the Japanese tea world, it’s made by toasting green tea in porcelain pots over charcoal. This creates its signature smoky, caramel notes which are simply sublime in white chocolate. Pure Flavours. Pure Pleasure.
LAS TRINCHERAS 72 DARK CHOCOLATE WITH COFFEE AND SPICES
Turkish Coffee is a highlight of the coffee world. Every household and region has its preferred spice blend based around cardamom, and all go perfectly with chocolate.
BLOOD ORANGE & CASHEW
BARACOA 65 DARK CHOCOLATE WITH BLOOD ORANGE AND CASHEW
Blood orange and cashew are both gentle souls, complementing each other with their depth and subtlety. It is a classic combination elevated by the extra creaminess of the cashews and the fragrant berry notes in the orange.
BARACOA 65 DARK CHOCOLATE WITH BOURBON RAISINS AND ORANGE
Whisky and chocolate is one of my all time favourite pairings. Here I have soaked the raisins in bourbon so you get bursts of bourbon with a background note of orange. Spectacular!
YUZU & ALMOND
YUZU AND ROASTED ALMONDS IN BARACOA 66 DARK CHOCOLATE
An aromatic Japanese take on the Mediterranean classic orange and almond. When I came to make this chocolate, I naturally turned to the Baracoa bean with its soft honey notes. Beautiful.