After my recent forays into Filipino chocolate tablea, I assumed that the tablea were the only source of Filipino-grown cacao that I could easily get my hands on. And while tablea are wonderful for making hot chocolate, champorado, and tsokolate ice cream, the powdery discs themselves aren't exactly something on which one can nibble for a quick chocolate fix.
Luckily for me, however, the Burnt Lumpia Worldwide Headquarters recently received three chocolate bars from the fine folks at Askinosie Chocolate--a small batch chocolate manufacturer based in Springfield, Missouri.
One of the many things that sets Askinosie apart from other artisan chocolate makers is that Askinosie sources 100% of its cacao beans directly from the farmers. All of their chocolate bars are made from authentic, traceable, single origin beans sourced in Mexico, Ecuador, and yup, the Philippines! In fact, Askinosie is the first chocolate maker to export cocoa beans from the Philippines in almost 25 years. In addition, Askinosie also pays its farmers above Fair Trade prices, as well as profit shares net 10% with its farmers.
"That's all fine and dandy," you might be saying, "but how does the chocolate taste?!!"
Well, the Askinosie chocolate I received was made from cacao beans grown in the Davao region of the Philippines. Among the three different chocolate bars was the 77% Davao Dark Chocolate bar, the Davao Dark Milk Chocolate bar with Fleur de Sel, and the Davao White Chocolate bar. And like all Askinosie chocolate bars, a picture of the local lead farmer is emblazoned on the Davao chocolate bar labels, as well as the bean origin, variety, and date the chocolate bar was made.