We proudly present our second ‘singlecôte’ chocolate, created from cocoa grown and harvested on just one part of Rabot Estate, our 250-year-old plantation in Saint Lucia.
The 15-acre Pépinière côte is the largest of our 16 côtes, bordered by riverbeds on the slope of a volcanic basin beneath the spectacular Piton mountains, and blessed with fabulously rich and fertile soil.
During the peak harvests in the autumn and spring, we collect ripe pods from Pépinière every two weeks. They’re taken back to our ‘nursery’ and within 24 hours, cracked open with a ‘cutlass’ – a kind of machete – and the beans are pulled out. We make sure that they’re fermented
and dried separately from all the other beans on our estate and, depending on the weather, they can be ready to roast within about two weeks.
Although harvesting from just a single section of an estate is common among winemakers, we think we’re the first chocolatier to do it.
In 2012, we created the world’s firstever single-côte chocolate bar, with cocoa harvested from our Marcial côte. Pépinière is our second, and although the two côtes are close, the subtle differences in terroir produce remarkably different cocoa personalities.
The flavour of our Marcial chocolate is full of red fruits and wine, with a woody, acidic middle and a clean finish; while our Pepiniere delivers milder yellow and citrus fruits, with a mellow, sweet and creamy middle and a smoky finish.
We’re already preparing a third côte – the Fond du Lac – for separate harvesting. Watch this space.