This bar is the second profile developed by Mariko at our Kuramae factory in Tokyo, Japan (after the 2015 Harvest of Öko Caribe cocoa beans). These beans come from Hacienda Azul, a single estate near Turrialba, Costa Rica. She and the Japan team were impressed with how similar the flavors were between the 70% and 100% bar.
Taste this bar next to the caramel notes that come from the San Francisco iteration of these same beans. Mariko loves how the flavors in the bar crescendo at the finish. We taste notes of Darjeeling tea, peanuts, and roasted coffee.
With the same beans, same machines, same process, same company, and same philosophy, we’ve found that the chocolate our partners make in Japan can be different from our American bars. Our chocolate makers like to calibrate our roast profiles to the local palate, and we’ve found that the Japanese team tends to like more fermented, roasted, and certain bitter flavors more often than we do in San Francisco. We are always fascinated by how much culture can influence the palate.
How did we get to Japan? Well, it’s a long story. We launched Dandelion Chocolate Japan in collaboration with Seiji Horibuchi in 2016. Seiji frequented our San Francisco café and we developed an immediate rapport over our shared love of chocolate. Seiji has an eye for detail, endless energy, and we loved our conversations together. He proposed a Japanese Dandelion Chocolate factory in Kuramae, old Tokyo—an area known for tucked-away artisan workshops and a craft culture. Our Kuramae factory makes several bars each year.
Two ounces (56g)
All of our single-origin chocolate is made with just cocoa beans and sugar; no added cocoa butter, lecithin, or vanilla. Our chocolate is free of soy, dairy, eggs, and gluten, and it is made in a factory that does not process nuts.