Making chocolate from bean-to-bar, what does it mean?
It means that every step of making the chocolate itself is done by the chocolate maker.
It starts with receiving dried, fermented cacao beans from select cacao growers from around the world! Then the cacao beans are roasted, then cracked to extract the precious cacao nibs. The nibs are then stone ground continuously for up to 3 days, adding some sugar, milk, or spices depending on the chocolate maker secret recipes.
The resulting chocolate is very flavourful. Try our single origin chocolate and discover the unique "terroir” from various cacao plantation!
Where does the cacao beans come from?
It comes from the Theobroma (which means ‘Food for the Gods’) is a tree native to the deep tropical regions of Central and South America. The cacao trees produce pods from which the cacao beans are extracted and turned into chocolate.
The theobroma cacao grows well 20 degrees North and South of the equator, preferably in the shade where the climate is hot and humid! You can now find cacao all over this region on the globe, try our Dak Lak Vietnam and Karkar Island Papua New Guinea chocolate and discover the flavours of these amazing regions!
See more details about each one of our cacao origins
Tell me more about cacao farming!
Harvesting is also done by hand, selecting the pods when they are just perfectly rippen. The cacao pods are cracked open and the interior seeds, the cacao beans are collected and sent to a central cacao processing plant. At the plant, the wet cacao beans are poured into large wooden fermentation boxes, stirred frequently, while monitoring the temperature of the mass. The process takes 3 to 7 days. This is where the magic happens and the chocolate flavours develops!
What's fine chocolate as opposed to well, just chocolate?
Over 90% percent of the world's cocoa is for bulk production, it is the chocolate being used commercially. The chocolate flavour produced is rather neutral, a plain tasting chocolate if you like.
Check out our tasting guide and you have yourself a chocolate tasting experience!
Where can you find us?
Petite Patrie is a home-based business near Medford Beach. We have a booth at Wolfville Farmers market where you can meet us and purchase our chocolate.
We enjoy doing chocolate tasting and pairing event at local wineries and venues in Nova Scotia.
Chocolatiers or Chocolate Makers? What's the difference?
Do we go to the cacao farms?
While we do go visit cacao farms, such as Divina Vida Finca in Costa Rica where we learn a great deal about cacao farming; we can keep contact with the farmers without meeting face to face.
Many chocolate makers opt for a more earth friendly approach. In Canada, many chocolate makers buy from MABCO, Juan Gonzalez the owner was himself a child working the cacao farms in Mexico. Now Canadian, he understands first hands the challenges of the farmers, we feel that he has the same interest as we do in terms of ensuring our cacao is ethically gorwn, free from child labour, organic or having organic practices.
Our carbon footprint is kept low and we have more time to make chocolate for you!
Where should I keep my chocolate bars? (and other shelf-life info)
DO NOT PUT YOUR CHOCOLATE IN THE FRIDGE!!!
Chocolate is like a sponge, if it is stored next to your soaps, you will get soap flavoured chocolate... ewww!
Milk and white chocolate have a shorter shelf-life of 6 months.