Our family has owned cacao farms and still engages in cacao production since 1892. We have always been around cacao or surrounded by relatives adept at cacao farming. Like most children in cacao growing communities we, toiled on the farm, could not afford chocolate but fantasied about eating and perhaps making it!
No chance!Though there is a glut of cacao beans in Ghana the practice has always been to export the fermented beans for cash. Cacao farming and chocolate making have been deliberately kept separate for over a century.
A visit to the Speciality Fine Food Fair sparked our interest in making chocolate after connecting with many small scale chocolate makers. This saved the cocoa trees on our farm as we had planned to replace them, with oil palm trees. Cacao growing per se is no longer financially viable.
Today we are one of the few vertically integrated chocolate makers in the UK with direct control over the entire value chain.
We grow and process our own cacao. Picking ripened pods, fermenting, drying, sorting, bagging and grading the beans. When these exquisite beans make their way to our kitchen in Sittingbourne, Kent, they are methodically sorted, delicately roasted, diligently winnowed, obsessively stone grounded and then aged to bring out the inherent flavour in each tablet. We make our chocolates with integrity. There is no 'couverture creep' in our tree or bean to bar!
When we run out of our own beans we search the world for the best possible fermented beans from single estates or cooperatives then add very little to them.
Provenance and social consciousness are pillars to our end products.
Along the way, we made a sensible detour. We added skincare and drinks, including (cocoa) beer in our products portfolio. We might probably be the only native African cacaofevier or Ghanaian cacaotier making their own chocolate and beer in the UK.
We do not actively promote our (functional) drinks. However, our three-stripe keg collection keeps growing due to a surge in demand.
They might soon be popping up in pubs, fairs, parties, weddings, cafes, shops, hotels or festivals near you.
At our craft beer and chocolate appreciation or tasting session, you not only get to know how these two products relate to each other when paired but also how they differ from their mass-produced counterparts.