Penryn-based Chocolarder is launching what surely must be one of the most unusual and luxurious Easter Eggs to be found on the market.
The 140g Easter egg is filled with a breath-taking combination of black bees’ honey and Madagascan vanilla, unrefined sugars and a pinch of Cornish sea salt. The final unexpected ingredient that balances this sweetness is a serving of foraged sea buckthorn from the nearby coast.
The result is a heavenly blend of bitter orange with hints of pine and mango, creating a fondant with real depth and character. The fondant fills two half eggs made from Chocolarder’s 55% Chuno milk chocolate which is grown at 300m altitude in San Jose de Bocay in Nicaragua. The chocolate has a rich, creamy, malty taste and is made from single varietal beans that are fully-traceable right back to the farm gate in the Nicaraguan highlands.
Chocolarder owner and founder Mike Longman is a former pastry chef who set up the company in 2012 using his previous experience in fine dining. Chocolate’s answer to Heston Blumenthal, Mike is a true innovator and is constantly looking for the next big flavour.
He said: “If you’re seeking something different for a special someone for Easter, this is a far cry from the mass-produced eggs that you see everywhere at this time of year. Having seen sea buckthorn growing along the Cornish coast and always wanting to make the most of the ingredients that surround us, I was keen to make the most of this mesmerising flavour. Mixing it with honey and vanilla has created a real showstopper and a fondant that is full of flavour but not too sweet. Not only that, but sea buckthorn is rich in vitamin C and Omega 7 and has been renowned for its health benefits for thousands of years.”
The egg is packaged in a beautiful wooden slat presentation box which is made from recycled materials and in turn is fully recyclable. Chocolarder strives to use as little packaging as possible while protecting the egg and keeping the flavour in prime condition.
As well as the Easter Egg, Chocolarder offers a full range of chocolate bars including amazing flavours such as a wild gorse flower bar made from gorse picked from the cliffs of Kynance; Cornish honeycomb, made from the honey of Lizard bees and a Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh bar, among others.
Mike adds: “My intention was to create a product based on the principles that have always been at the heart of great food – unadulterated sensory enjoyment without compromise. No shortcuts, preservatives, bulking agents, substitutions or artificial shenanigans. Just the real deal from the bean to the chocolate. This is a genuine commitment to ethical transparency that extends to every aspect of the business.”
Mike has an unequalled knowledge of chocolate and is one of about 20 chocolate in the UK who buy in the raw organic cocoa beans and make chocolate from scratch. He is also passionate about supporting reputable growers and farmers while shipping the beans to the UK in the lowest carbon method possible – via sail ship.
The select beans used at The Chocolarder are roasted, winnowed and ground using a grinder made by Mike. They are then left to mature for 30 days. The chocolate is then hand tempered and made into bars. This obsessive attention to detail yields some of the finest chocolate in production today.
“It’s a beautiful and highly-visual process and we’d love for more people to enjoy the theatre and spectacle,” he added.
The firm has exciting growth plans for 2018 and is building a new headquarters complete with factory and café via a crowdfunding campaign. The new building will be based in Bluebell Hill, close to the site where the company originated.
Chocolarder was founded in 2012 by former pastry chef Mike Longman. Mike is fascinated with the process of producing chocolate from scratch and has perfected the art of roasting, conching and alchemising cocoa firstly in his kitchen at home and now at Chocolarder HQ in Penryn.
Chocolarder is one of the only small batch bean-to-bar chocolate makers in the country, producing fine quality, stone-ground chocolate using organic beans imported from single estate, family run plantations in Venezuela, Java, Madagascar, Peru and the Dominican Republic.
Demand for the delicious, high-quality product means that Mike is looking at a larger premises and is crowdfunding this project, where investors can buy bespoke gifts and experiences such as tours, corporate events and products in order to raise the £50,000 needed for the new factory.
The Easter Egg is priced at £13.95 and is available at selected outlets including Harrods, Fortnum and Mason, various farm shops and online at http://www.chocolarder.com
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