Taza Chocolate

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Taza Chocolate
Type Private
Industry Food and Confectionery Manufacturers
Founded 2005
Founder(s) Alex Whitmore and Kathleen Fulton
Headquarters Somerville, Massachusetts, USA
Products Chocolate Mexicano Discs, Stone Ground Dark Chocolate Bars, Tazito Mini Crunch Bars, Baking Chocolate, & Chocolate Covered Treats
Website www.tazachocolate.com

Taza Chocolate is a chocolate manufacturer based in Somerville, MA, USA. The company produces stone ground, organic chocolate "from bean to bar", as well as other chocolate related foods. Their main product is a Mexican-style table chocolate (chocolate para mesa), used to make hot cocoa.

Show room and store at Taza factory in Somerville, MA

Founding[edit]

In 2005, Taza Chocolate Founder, Alex Whitmore took his first bite of stone ground chocolate while traveling in Oaxaca, Mexico. He was so inspired by the rustic intensity that he decided to create a chocolate factory back home in Somerville, MA. Alex apprenticed under a molinero in Oaxaca to learn how to hand-carve granite mill stones to make a new kind of American chocolate that is simply crafted, but seriously good.[1]

A disc of Taza Salted Almond Chocolate showing the company's distinctive brand graphics

The company and product[edit]

Taza Chocolate has been noted for being economically, and environmentally sustainable, and for their focus on compensating growers fairly for their work.[2]

A number of chefs have turned to Taza's products, utilizing the chocolates in their recipes. Several micro-brewers are also using Taza as an ingredient in their beers.[3]

Reviews[edit]

Critics and reviewers have often noted the unusual texture of the chocolates (which is from the stone-grinding). The flavor of the chocolate has been described as "fruity", and is sometimes compared to flavors found in wines.

In the February 2009 issue of Gourmet magazine, Charles Kelsey wrote, "On the palate, Taza chocolate is wild. It buzzes, slaps, and sings with an exotic, winy complexity. Most intriguing is its coarse, faintly gritty texture. At first it's slightly off-putting. But when the tiny granules - pieces of cacao bean - start flashing on your tongue, they hit it with intense nutty, citrus flavors."[4]

In the October 15, 2008 edition of Wine Spectator, Owen Dugan commented, "I also liked Taza Chocolate... Forget about the texture - these guys stone-grind the beans. Yep, stone-grind. Why? the simple answer is, because they're crazy. But they claim that they get more fruit out of the beans by refining less. Typically, there's a sweet spot in chocolate production- perfect texture and peak flavor at the same time.... Bottom line; If you can get past the graininess you do get a very fruity (I tasted kirsch in the 80 percent bar) but also rustically chocolaty bar, at both 70 and 80 percent"[5]

Products[edit]

A display of many of the products sold by Taza Chocolate

Taza sells a variety of chocolates in bars and discs.[6]

The bars include:

  • Taza Dark 87% Bar – 87% Cocoa
  • Taza Dark 80% Bar – 80% Cocoa
  • Taza Dark 70% Bar – 70% Cocoa
  • Taza Dark 60% Bar – 60% Cocoa

The discs include:

  • 70% Cacao Puro Chocolate Mexicano Discs
  • 70% Cacao Orange Chocolate Mexicano Discs
  • 70% Cacao Chipotle Chili Chocolate Mexicano Discs
  • 70% Cacao Ginger Chocolate Mexicano Discs
  • 70% Cacao Assorted Intense Chocolate Mexicano Discs
  • Cinnamon Chocolate Mexicano Discs
  • Salted Almond Chocolate Mexicano Discs
  • Vanilla Bean Chocolate Mexicano Discs
  • Guajillo Chili Chocolate Mexicano Discs
  • Coffee Chocolate Mexicano Discs
  • Salt & Pepper Chocolate Mexicano Discs

Other items include:

  • Chocolate Covered Hazelnuts
  • Chocolate Covered Almonds
  • Chocolate Covered Cashews
  • Taza Dark 87% Baking Squares – 87% Cocoa
  • Taza Dark 80% Baking Squares – 80% Cocoa
  • Taza Dark 70% Baking Squares – 70% Cocoa
  • Taza Dark 60% Baking Squares – 60% Cocoa
  • Chocolate-Covered Cacao Nibs Canister
  • Roasted Cacao Nibs Canister
  • Chocolate Covered Cocoa Nibs Bag
  • Chocolate Mexicano Extract

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "The Taza Chocolate Story". tazachocolate.com. Retrieved January 25, 2014. 
  2. ^ "Taza Chocolate – U.S.A.". Chocosphere. Retrieved August 16, 2012. 
  3. ^ Carley Thornell (November 12, 2008). "Setting the Bar Higher". The Boston Herald. 
  4. ^ Charles Kelsey (February 2009). "Good Living Food - Artisan Rolling Stone". Gourmet Magazine. p. 33. 
  5. ^ Owen Dugan (October 15, 2008). "The New Americans". Wine Spectator. 
  6. ^ "Taza Chocolate – U.S.A.". Chocosphere. Retrieved August 16, 2012. 

External links[edit]