TOASTED WALNUT • FRESH RED FRUIT • BROWN FRUIT
SOURCED WITH OUR PARTNER
A decade ago, our friends Dan Pearson and Brian Horsley were tromping around in the Peruvian jungle, trying to source bananas to import to the United States.
They stumbled upon the Marañon Canyon and some of the rarest cacao beans in the world, which the USDA verified as a genetic pure version of a type called Nacional. In fact, the USDA thought this variety in a pure form had been extinct for nearly 100 years. These beans are pure Nacional, and 40 percent white — a coveted color in the cacao world.
Dan and Brian formed their company Marañon Chocolate and began working with Peruvian farmer Fortunato, who with his family and the other farmers in the community care for the trees and harvest the cacao pods. They pre-select the best beans out of each pod, then transport them to the processing facility, where they conduct a second selection process, removing damaged, discolored, and unripe beans. The beans are then placed in fermenting boxes made from local wood and hand-stirred for a number of days, then dried on raised tables in natural sunlight.
We started working with Marañon five years ago because we were fascinated with the story of the cacao. Now we’ve gotten to know the people involved in harvesting and fermenting these beans and are even more excited to be using them!