Saturday, November 4, 2023

Mutari Chocolate - Tranquilidad, Heirloom, Wild Bolivia 72% (bar) - Nov. 4, 2023

Chocolate of the Day

Mutari Craft Chocolate
(White Label/Single Origin Chocolate)
Tranquilidad, Heirloom, Wild Bolivia 72% (bar)
Good ++
Weight: 1.15 oz. (32.5 g.) / 2.3 oz. (65 g.) in total bar
Calories: 178 calories (estimate) in 1/2 bar
Cost: $ Missing information
Purchased from: Mutari Chocolate, Santa Cruz, CA

Welcome to Day #9 of Chocolate and Bolivia Theme Week.

Today's White Label Tranquilidad, Heirloom, Wild Bolivia 72% (bar) was from Mutari Craft Chocolate (Santa Cruz, CA). 

The Beniano cacao used to make this bar was from the Tranquilidad Forest Estate, managed by Volker Lehmann, in the Beni Department of northern Bolivia.*

Aroma notes for this chocolate included: naturally sweet, pleasing cocoa, very faint molasses, very faint dried fruit (raisin, peach), and ultra faint graham cracker.

This well-tempered bar had a smooth texture and a creamy melt and mouthfeel.

Flavor notes included: dark chocolate (smooth, rich chocolatey, (warm cocoa, brownie)) with naturally sweet notes (very faint honey, sweet molasses, very faint sweet nut); and very faint dried, iron-rich fruit (raisin, dried plum). 

This chocolate had a very pleasing, nuanced, chocolate-y flavor. It possessed a rich aroma and flavor complexity, while also being relatively low in bitterness. The choice of 72% cacao seemed just right.

Today's Tranquilidad Heirloom Wild Bolivia chocolate (made with rare Beniano beans**) reminded me of other Criollo/heritage cacao-based chocolate bars: subtle, rich, layered flavors that were gentle, but transporting. 

Chocolates made with heirloom and heritage cacao beans make up a small fraction of the world's bars. Many thanks to all those who were part of growing the cacao, bringing the cacao to market, and making and distributing this special, small batch, bean-to-bar chocolate.

Maker's Tasting Notes: "Raisin, Tabacco, Nutty, Chocolate Base"

Ingredients: Cacao Beans, Organic Sugar, Organic Cocoa Butter

Allergen-related information: 

*Bolivia is about the size of Texas and California combined, and cacao growing regions are often in very remote areas. The Beni Department alone (in northern Bolivia) is close to the size of the Western U.S. State of Idaho.

** Beniano cacao is grown in the Beni Department of northern Bolivia, adjacent to wild forests of cacao that date back thousands of years. Evidence to date (2015 study) has suggested that wild cacao trees first evolved in present day South America approximately 10 million years ago--long before the first humans arrived. 

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