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Meet the Maker - Bullion Chocolate

Meet the Maker - Bullion Chocolate

Inspired by the ancient Maya Indians, who valued the cocoa bean so much that it was used as currency, Max decided to source the finest cocoa beans from across the globe; and produce single origin, craft chocolate from bean to bar.

By using this meticulous approach, he believes people will experience chocolate from a totally different perspective. Just as fine wine, he wants people to discuss the origin and flavour notes of the chocolate they produce.

Ultimately, he aims to speak for the Growers and the unique personalities of the beans that they produce – using his signature bullion to give cocoa the appreciation it deserves.

Tell us a few words about the launching of your business.

I feel most people are barely scraping the surface when it comes to chocolate. The chocolate we’ve come to expect is so far from what it could be. For years the true flavours of cacao have been masked in order to create a product, which is a consistent sweet fix for the masses.

When in truth, chocolate is so much more complex than that. Different bean varieties, harvests, origins and post-harvest production processes, all have a huge baring on the finished taste. So no two bars are quite alike, which really opens up a side of chocolate that many people just don’t know about.

Witnessing someone taste true craft chocolate for the first time is quite special for me. Something they thought they knew, but they actually really didn’t. It only took a bite to realise that.

How did you come up with the name of your business?

The story begins in the rainforests of Central America and the Amazon basin, where cocoa trees originally grew. As long ago as 600 AD, the Maya Indians of Central America were making a chocolate drink by roasting the cocoa beans and adding water and spices. They valued this drink so highly that they cleared land and grew more cocoa trees, to increase the supply. They also used the beans as a form of currency which clearly shows how valuable cocoa was regarded.

This influenced our decision to name our chocolate  Bullion, emphasising the true value of the cocoa beans that we use. Working alongside cooperatives, we are able to ensure that the growers are rewarded. Resulting in repeat crops of the finest cocoa beans to produce our range of Bullion Chocolate.

Tell us a bit about your ingredients and how you source them.

The cacao we buy has a big positive social impact. We pay farmers a premium price, this means they continue to grow cacao, which has a fantastic impact on biodiversity and the communities at the origin.

What is your favourite product from your range and why?

All 3 of our current origins have such varying flavour profiles, even though they're all 70%. It really depends on how I'm feeling. If you want something comforting go with our No1 bar. Something with a real fruity edge? Then no3. And perfectly in the middle is No2 which has ties comforting notes with a soft fruit finish. I can't choose!

Describe a typical day.

There are various steps involved in chocolate making from bean-to-bar. No two days tend to be the same and there never seems to be enough hours in them! Everything from bean sorting, roasting and wrapping can be all crammed in.

What part of your job do you enjoy the most and why? 

Witnessing someone taste true craft chocolate for the first time is quite special for me. Something they thought they knew, but they actually really didn’t. It only took a bite to realise that.

What have been some memorable business challenges along the way?

I'll always remember our first subscription box order. We hand wrap all of our bars so that can be challenging at times, bit committing to this particular large order was interesting. Put it this way, it took a while... or should I say weeks! It was a learning curve but I must say we're pretty fast when it comes to wrapping now!

Who are some other producers that you admire and why?

I know how much work goes into crafting chocolate from the bean, so I admire the handful of UK makers that are doing it. I also think highly of Spirit of Yorkshire, they're Yorkshire's first whiskey distillery and we have many common values when it comes to quality. They're producing some cracking spirits.

Discover Bullion Chocolate range here.


  #Community   #Meet the Makers   #meet the maker   #bullion chocolate   #bean to bar chocolate

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