Another regional winner: chocolate

Dark, milk or white, there's god chocolate being made right here. Image: Ajout d'une transparence

Dark, milk or white, lots of chocolate is being produced all over the place. Image: Romainhk, Creative Commons

New York, Vermont, Quebec and Ontario all produce lots of maple syrup, an array of dairy products, big crops of apples and so on. NCPR has reported on micro-breweries, craft beer studies, wine producers and wine trails and experimental crops, like saffron. Cocoa beans don’t grow here but it turns out our region makes some pretty good chocolate too.

As reported by Laura Robin in the Ottawa Citizen:

Hummingbird Chocolate Maker, a three-year-old bean-to-bar chocolate company based in Almonte, has won a second set of honours in as many weeks.

The International Chocolate Awards 2014 announced Monday Hummingbird has won Bronze in the Plain Dark Single-Origin category in the intensely competitive Americas semi-finals for its Hispaniola bar, which is made with beans from the Dominican Republic.

Last week, Hummingbird won Silver in the Canada-wide competition in the “dark chocolate bars flavoured with an infusion or flavouring” category for its Fleur de Sel bar, which is also made with beans from the Dominican Republic.

Not knowing much about the International Chocolate Awards I went to their website. Wow, what an amazing number of categories! And how might one apply to be a judge? (Hmm, experts only. Too bad.)

Vermont’s Lake Champlain Chocolates (est. 1983) has its own bean-to-bar award winner in a new line under the Blue Bandana label: “winner of the 2014 Good Food Awards for its 70% Madagascar Dark Chocolate Bar and 70% Madagascar Wild Pepper Dark Chocolate Bar.” Here’s a company Q & A with Eric Lampman about that award and why he wanted to work on single-origin craft chocolate.

Truth be told, it’s hard to write about all this without wanting to do more investigative reporting and some quality control sampling. But it’s nice to see this level of diversity and success as people in our region broaden what we make and eat.

Where it starts: cocoa fruit with cocoa beans. Image by Mininus, Creative Commons

Where it starts: cocoa fruit with cocoa beans. Image by Mininus, Creative Commons

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1 Comment on “Another regional winner: chocolate”

  1. knuckleheadedliberal says:

    More chocolatiers:
    Barkeater in North Creek. Steininger’s in Salem, I’ll bet there are more…

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