As with most plants, cacao beans, from which chocolate is manufactured, take on the characteristics particular to the region where they were grown and harvested. This is called their terroir.
Cacao beans that have been blended lose their terroir, hence the preference of some chocolatiers for single-origin chocolate products.
Davao-based Malagos Agri-Ventures Corporation, for example, produces the award-winning single origin premium Malagos Chocolate. This product line grew out of the resolve of the Malagos company matriarch, Mama Charita Puentespina, to reinvigorate the Davao’s cacao industry which crashed in the 1980s.
Instead of just exporting cacao beans to serve as raw materials for foreign chocolate manufacturers, Mama Charita drove the company’s cacao growing and post-harvest practices, as well as campaigned to make cacao a priority crop in the region.
Today, Malagos Chocolates is an internationally recognized and awarded brand. It is made from high quality cacao beans, grown in the Malagos farm in the foothills of Davao’s Mount Talomo.
The beans are carefully fermented, sun-dried and roasted in temperature controlled roasters, then ground to a fine texture at par with international chocolate standards. These processes are all done without the product ever leaving Davao, making Malagos Chocolates all natural, single origin and tree-to-bar.
I chanced upon Kultura Filipino’s “Crafts for a Cause” exhibit over the weekend and replenished my chocolate stash from the local brands featured there.
I picked the 65% dark chocolate; being the lowest percentage cacao content among the brand’s offerings, I think this variant offers the best balance between sweet and bitter chocolate flavors.
And apparently, I’m not the only one that thinks so. Malagos Chocolate’s 65% Dark Chocolate has won international awards, particularly in Academy of Chocolate’s Tree-to-Bar category in 2017, and in the World Drinking Chocolate Competition organized by the International Chocolate Awards in 2015.
Fancy a bite of this award-winning, single origin dark chocolate treat? Malagos Chocolates are available at SM Kultura Filipino branches in SM Mall of Asia, SM Makati, SM Megamall, SM AURA, SM North EDSA, Taal Vista and Pico Loro.
For more details, visit malagoschocolate.com.