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Preparing Cacao

From sprouted seed to finished Fortunato No. 4 chocolate made in Switzerland, we follow precise steps to guarantee traceable origins and quality. Elite chocolatiers and pastry chefs shape these bars into the chocolates creations we all love.

A Family Business

Harvest

In the Marañón Canyon, cacao harvesting is a family event and takes precise skill. To guarantee traceability, the harvested pods are stacked and left unopened until we arrive.  If done incorrectly cacao beans can be easily damaged.

Only the Best

Bean Selection

The same day the pods are harvested they are opened and the best beans are selected, placed in sealed containers and transported to our facility in Marañón. Upon arrival we conduct a second selection process, removing damaged, discolored and unripe beans. Next, we thoroughly mix the beans by hand to add additional oxygen, which enhances the fermenting process. It also evens the temperature of all the beans. The beans are then ready for fermenting boxes.

Precise regulation

Cacao Fermentation

The fermenting boxes are constructed from Laurel wood, a hardwood grown in the Marañón Canyon. During fermentation daily temperature and PH measurements are taken and carefully regulated, removed daily to a special table and stirred thoroughly by hand. The fermented cacao beans undergo a proprietary process which removes significant amounts of vinegar acid that protects the delicate fruit, flora and nut flavors.

Sun-kissed

Cacao Drying

The fermented beans are dried outside on raised tables in natural sunlight. Moisture levels are monitored electronically several times each day. A third selection process is conducted to remove flat and small beans. When roasted in Switzerland, these genetically pure, nearly identical sized beans, assure a very even and complete roasting. This results in extraordinarily consistent flavors.

Extraordinary flavors

Cacao Roasting

Our cacao beans are then shipped to Switzerland and chocolate is made in the 1879 longitudinal conch and formed into 1.1 pound bars. These genetically pure, nearly identical sized beans, assure a very even and complete roasting, resulting in extraordinarily delicate, consistent flavors.