3 Jan 2014: The Forum is currently in read-only made while we update to a new version of the Seventy% website and forum.

The forum will be back with a faster, simplified and up to date website in the next two months.

Please consider registering
guest

Log In

Lost password?
Advanced Search:

— Forum Scope —



— Match —



— Forum Options —




Wildcard usage:
*  matches any number of characters    %  matches exactly one character

Minimum search word length is 4 characters - maximum search word length is 84 characters

The forums are currently locked and only available for read only access
Topic RSS
Who really makes chocolate?
March 4, 2008
3:45 pm
Alex Rast
Manchester, United Kingdom
Member
Forum Posts: 283
Member Since:
October 13, 2009
Offline
101

quote:


Originally posted by chocophile

Cluizel products are sold in over 3000 retail locations in France (most of them Tabacs) so that’s why they are not considered artisan chocolate makers/chocolatiers. Same reasoning with Valrhona.

quote:


Originally posted by Alan

Well,

I have just been reading “100% Chocolate” by Katherine Khodorowsky, … Khodorowsky lists the following French chocolate companies as “bean to bar” artisan chocolate makers:

Bonnat
Pralus
Bernachon
Weiss

I guess that Michel Cluizel’s company, along with Valrhona, is to large to make it on the list.



Which seems pretty arbitrary, given that Weiss is being distributed in the USA in Cost Plus World Market shops (a large national chain), Pralus is to be found in Whole Foods Market in London (part of what now is an international chain – and one finds them in WFM’s in the USA as well, and Bonnat also has widespread distribution.

Now, let’s not be mistaken, Cluizel and Valrhona do have a far larger production scale than the above named, but I don’t think production volume in and of itself should be a criterion of artisanal. That’s simply bashing volume reflexively, under the notion that larger corporate size automatically, almost as a matter of definition, means mass-market orientation. By the volume standards, even La Maison du Chocolat might be getting pretty high by now, and I don’t imagine anyone would label them as “mass-market” or hesitate to call them artisanal.

I think the criteria of artisanal should be commitment to quality (and delivery on results), striving to improve, distinctive individual style, and perhaps some marks of originality. Once these are in place I think size matters not – indeed, a hypothetical Callebaut producing chocolate of a standard equal to a Bonnat or a Pralus I would think would qualify as artisanal. Realistically speaking, there are ultimate barriers – it becomes impossible to source quality cacao above some limits, which is one reason why we don’t in practice see Callebaut being the equal of Bonnat, but in principle I don’t think the size or extent of distribution should be taken into account.

Alex Rast
Alex_Rast_Alternate@hushmail.com

Alex Rast Alex_Rast_Alternate@hushmail.com
March 5, 2008
1:48 am
Foodpump
Vancouver, Canada
Member
Forum Posts: 28
Member Since:
March 4, 2008
Offline
102

Lindt? And the other Swiss, Max Felchin and Carma?

April 4, 2008
6:24 pm
Masur
Stockholm, Sweden
Member
Forum Posts: 592
Member Since:
August 6, 2006
Offline
103

Carma is owned by Barry Callebaut. I think we have included Max Flechlin and Lindt in our list.

Bombons BLANXART seems to be another bean to bar maker. Can anyone confirm:
[url]http://www.blanxart.com/[/url]

“Porcelana: The Holy Grail of Pure Criollos” (Maricel E. Presilla)

"Porcelana: The Holy Grail of Pure Criollos" (Maricel E. Presilla)
April 4, 2008
9:02 pm
ellie
london, United Kingdom
Member
Forum Posts: 308
Member Since:
March 17, 2005
Offline
104

Surely the care a company takes in sourcing the beans should be an important consideration, when trying to define an artisan producer. That will be feasible only up to certain optimal production size. If they buy cocoa on the commodity market and start good careful process from roasting, say – would it still be artisan producer?

And doesn’t “artisan” generally used as opposed to “industrial, mass-produced” – read large-scale?

Just a side note.

I agree, the criteria in the bean-to-bar producers have to be diversified.