April 8, 2011
Oh my, my- do I have a treat for you?!
Tcho chocolate is my new favorite. I love chocolate. Due to my post-40-year-old metabolism, I can’t eat as much of it as I used to. But when I have sweets, I want them to be decadent. Tcho fits the bill. Decadent.
The kids and I did a tour of the Tcho factory at Pier 17 in San Francisco a few weeks ago. They do a great presentation on how chocolate is produced from ripening the beans all the way through fermentation and production. So interesting. It’s no surprise that we also loved the tasting part. Think of the concept of terroir– you can taste where something is grown by the flavor. If you’ve done olive oil or wine tastings, this concept will be familiar to you. When you’re paying attention to what you’re tasting with wine or olive oil, you begin to taste a variety of flavors. Pepper, cherries, mango, grass- the best are nuanced and complex. What I didn’t know was that you could have this same experience with chocolate. We tasted four different chocolates where you could taste different flavors, but without any additives. In other words, the range of flavors that we tasted in the chocolate ranged from pecan to walnut to lemon to strawberry to raspberry (to name just a few). These flavors were purely from the cocoa beans, along with a bit of sugar, cocoa butter and vanilla.
Not only is Tcho chocolate decadent to eat, but all of their chocolate is both Fair Trade and Organic. Truly the best ingredients. The way that they operate is above board and ethical. They have a strong anti-slavery stance. They also work with their producers to develop better processing results. This improves the quality of the beans that Tcho uses, and it increases the price that cocoa farmers can demand for their beans. Tcho isn’t cheap, but it’s some of the best chocolate I’ve eaten. Competes with Valrhona, which I no longer buy.
If you’re looking for a special Easter treat, give Tcho a try. You won’t be disappointed.