At the kitchen table. That’s where most great projects start. And Chocolarder is no exception. In 2012, Mike Longman, who had been a pastry chef working in a host of fine restaurants dedicated to using locally sourced ingredients, decided it was high time that Cornwall produced some of its own chocolate. And not just chocolate of superb quality but made as sustainably and ethically as possible.
Over a decade of dedication later, his vision is in full sail in the coastal town of Falmouth. And Chocolarder’s delicious creations are matched by its exceptional eco-credentials. Not only does it source cocoa beans from responsible farms from around the world, it transports them across the seas by sailing ships, straight into Falmouth’s famous port, just down the road from the factory.
The beans are then roasted, ground and conched (aerated and kneaded) before being tempered (to make it smooth and glossy). All these processes are carried out on vintage machines, restored by Mike and his team. Now that’s what you call recycling.
In its work, Chocolarder is able to support charities, such as those that help to preserve rainforests in Peru and Sierra Leone. And every element of the business is conducted to minimise the impact on the planet, while maximising positive projects, all with complete transparency.
As for the chocolate itself, it’s free of palm oil, emulsifier and additives (the packaging is free of plastic too). What it is packed with, though, is fantastic flavour. Some are quite quirky too – think of wild gorse flower and toasted oat milk. And you’ll get to taste it in the delicious desserts in Indigo. Yum.