Madre Chocolate wins award at Big Isle fest

May. 15, 2014 | 0 Comments


Madre Chocolate has won the best bean-to-bar chocolate award at the Big Island Chocolate Festival for the third year in a row.

The 70 percent dark chocolate bar was crafted with cacao grown by Gini Choobua on the Likao Kula Farm in Holualoa. Madre owners David Elliott and Nat Bletter collaborated with Choobua to perfect a post-harvest fermentation technique that highlights gooseberry and brazil-nut notes in the farm’s cacao.

Though low nighttime temperatures can make cacao production difficult, the cold and the farm’s 1,600-foot altitude contribute to an exceptionally creamy texture, due to the unique qualities of cocoa butter in beans grown at high altitudes.

Judges were Jacques Torres of the Chocolate Haven and former executive pastry chef at Le Cirque, chef Donald Wressell of Guittard, chef Vincent Bourdin of Valrhona USA and chef Stanton Ho of Amoretti.

Madre has racked up 11 awards in the past 2 years, including an International Chocolate Award in London. It is the only award-winning chocolate company to use U.S.-grown cacao and the first Hawaii food producer to win two Good Food Awards.

Madre’s shop in Kailua offers a variety of weekly chocolate events, from cacao farm and chocolate factory tours to bean-to-bar chocolate making classes, as well as whiskey-and-chocolate pairings, traditional mole-making classes, and an intensive cacao boot camp aimed at training chocolate makers. Visit

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