Our Trip to Belize: Harvesting with Maya Mountain Cacao

By Orissa Agnihotri & Brielle Milano

 

Fostering close relationships with our cacao farmers is a key value at Raaka.  Earlier this May, Raaka’s Director of Sales, Brielle Milano and I had the opportunity to travel to Belize to visit one of the wonderful cacao cooperatives that Raaka sources from - Maya Mountain Cacao.  We spent a week working alongside the MMC team buying wet cacao, giving out samples of Raaka to local cacao farmers, and learning about cacao farming, processing and exporting.

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Cacao Origin: Madagascar

The citrus-marmalade flavor of Madagascar’s cacao beans can be a surprising taste to the uninitiated. These beans have a complex acidity, resulting in a bright tang that lingers long on the tongue. Like wine, cacao has terroir: the embodiment of its origin delivered through flavor. To preserve terroir, we don’t roast our cacao, crafting virgin chocolate with simple grinding, milling, tempering and pouring. Madagascar’s distinct, robust cacao is perfect for introducing this concept.  

 

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February's First Nibs

February's First Nibs feature one bar crafted from with Peru Nacional, topped with white cacao nibs, and another with candied rose hips for a decadent pairing to get you through those winter blues and celebrate the month of love. 

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Fall in love, with just one bite.

When a piece of chocolate melts on your tongue, a chain of chemical reactions begin. From your taste buds, through your veins, to the brain, and of course, the heart, chocolate creates a sense of elation that perhaps no other individual food can match. 

What separates a bar of chocolate from other highly celebrated and palatable foods is a harmonious trio of chemicals innate to the cacao bean: theobromine, phenylethylamine, and anandamide. 

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What is virgin chocolate?

Being neither raw nor roasted, Raaka is different kind of chocolate. Our process is gentle; our flavors are vibrant. This is virgin chocolate.

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