Bean-to-Bar: We create craft chocolate from scratch. The process takes over a month from the time we open a bag of cacao beans. With simply the finest cacao beans and some organic coconut palm sugar, we produce craft chocolate bars like you have never tasted before.
Single-Origin: Each chocolate bar contains cacao beans from only one farm or region, with the origin stated clearly on each bar. Like grape varietals from different wine regions, each origin’s cacao beans have distinctive flavor profiles to enjoy.
Handcrafted: All of our chocolate is crafted by hand each step of the way, from carefully sorting the cacao beans to the final pour of our tempered chocolate into our unique hexagonal shape chocolate bars.
Where It Begins
Throughout our travels, we have become friends with cacao farmers from around the world and explored many of their farms. This allows us to better understand the quality of the cacao beans we source from places like Ecuador, Madagascar, Peru, Tanzania, and Venezuela. We only bring the highest quality “flavor beans” into our kitchen. Flavor beans represent less than 5% of all cacao beans produced and are different from “commodity beans” used in almost all other chocolate.
A cacao tree flowers twice per year and produces cacao pods. The pods are green in color before they ripen, but once fully ripened they turn to beautiful yellows, oranges and reds before they are removed from the tree. The outer peel of the pod is removed and the seeds (cacao beans) are left to ferment for nearly a week. The seeds are intensely bitter and the fermentation process naturally develops the beans’ flavors. After the fermentation process, the cacao beans are sun dried for another week and then bagged and shipped to us in Las Vegas.
Once in our kitchen, the cacao beans are hand sorted so that we only use the finest of the “flavor beans” for our chocolate. It is a labor intensive process, but necessary to create the quality we demand. Yes, we look at every single bean that goes into our chocolate.
The beans are gently roasted to darken the color, further reduce bitterness, and bring out the specific flavor characteristics sought for that batch of cacao beans. Different origins’ beans are roasted at different temperatures and for different time periods depending upon several variables – origin, bean size, humidity and flavor desired.
The beans are cracked and “winnowed” to remove the shells from around the bean. The shells are very light and once cracked we use a machine with a fan to just blow the shells away. This leaves the cacao “nib” which is the key ingredient for making chocolate.
Grinding & Conching
Our cacao nibs are put into our natural stone grinders where they are ground into a paste called chocolate liquor (a.k.a cocoa mass). Despite the name, chocolate liquor has absolutely no alcoholic content. At the appropriate time, organic coconut palm sugar is added to the chocolate liquor where they are “conched,” or mixed and aerated, to thoroughly blend our two ingredients. This grinding and conching process takes at least three days around the clock to reach the proper consistency, the entire time releasing intense and wonderful chocolate aromas into our kitchen over the Tasting Bar where our guests can enjoy.
Our chocolate is now formed into blocks which are wrapped and aged for a minimum of 4 weeks. Like wine, chocolate has tannins and the flavors develop as it ages.
After the aging process is completed, the chocolate is melted and then “tempered” through slow, stepped changes in temperature. During this process, the chocolate is cooled and then warmed, then cooled further and warmed once again, and so on until it reaches the correct temperature, creating an even crystallization of the ingredients throughout the chocolate. There is a lot of science and art to the the tempering process, which gives the chocolate its smooth texture, proper melting point, and a crisp snap when broken into pieces.
The tempered chocolate is then poured into the molds which will form the shape of the bar. When chocolate cools it becomes solid, is removed from the molds by hand as chocolate bars, and wrapped in their inner wrapper to keep the chocolate kitchen fresh for up to 6 months.