Artisanal, ethical and healthy chocolate is a labour of love and passion on many fronts. The effort that goes into sourcing so that the cacao farmers get a decent living wage. The dedication to organic, pure, sustainable and simple ingredients that speak for themselves in flavour intensity. All these demand the dedication of a chocolatier who goes the extra mile.
Meet Trudy Cockroft of Chow Cacao, she is the chocolatier who goes the extra mile for you and the planet. Good chocolate makes you happy, but truly great chocolate makes you happy and does good at the same time.
Getting to Know You
I am so excited to have you here today – tell us about your business and its ethos.
At Chow Cacao we are all about pure, simple and organic ingredients. We don’t add any preservatives, stabilisers, or overload our products with sugar. We want you to taste the goodness of cacao!
Dark chocolate should really only have only 2 ingredients, cacao and some type of sweetner but unfortunately today, a lot of dark chocolates have a long list of ingredients, and some of which we don’t even know.
Fairtrade means a lot to us as well. In the chocolate industry, a lot of cacao farmers are taken advantage of. When you buy Chow Cacao you are supporting two creative minds with ethical practices and giving back to the farmers and families in Peru.
What motivated and inspired you to start your own chocolate business?
Chocolate has always been apart of my life. I became really interested in the process of chocolate making. I really enjoyed the science behind it all. As I became more health conscious in my 20’s, I wanted to learn more about the benefits of cacao. A lot of the raw healthy chocolates on the market then were very fudgey and soft. But I’ve always liked a traditional, snappy dark chocolate.
Bridging the gap between a traditional chocolate and a raw chocolate was my next challenge. A traditional tasting chocolate bar with all the health benefits!
What are your next steps for Chow Cacao?
We have just finished our re-branding. A new look for the new year. We are so excited to share this with everybody! It truly captures what we are all about and our personalities.
What is the typical day of an artisan chocolatier? Tell me it involves eating chocolate everyday!
A typical day includes pouring out 40kg of chocolate from the stone grinder. (Depending on the flavour, the chocolate is ground for 2-3 days). We then temper this chocolate before it’s poured it into their moulds.
We then leave them to set before we can de-mould and hand wrap all the bars we have made that day.
A production day usually takes all day (with a surf break in between). And yes we need to taste test all day 🙂
How do you come up with chocolate flavours? I love the whimsical chocolate names you use.
Chocolate flavours are usually on our minds for quite a while actually. A lot of tests are done and a lot of friends help us with this process. I don’t think they mind taste testing all the time. Classic flavours with a twist is what we are all about. And flavours that remind us of our childhood.
We have a couple of new flavours brewing at the moment… you should see these on the shelves early next year!
What would be your ultimate personal chocolate experience?
My ultimate chocolate experience would have to be with the farmers in Peru. I would love to harvest the pods and dry the beans myself before creating a bar. Being apart of the whole process would definitely be my ultimate experience.
My partner and business partner however would be to jump into a pool of chocolate.
To go with your chocolate – coffee or tea?
I would usually say coffee… but now I’m pregnant I can’t do coffee (I don’t know why!) So now I would say a black Darjeeling tea to pair with our 80% Smooth Dark chocolate.
Your personal favourite – dark, milk, white or ruby?
My personal favourite is definitely dark! The different flavours you get from single origins is unreal!
Chocolate drink – hot or cold?
This depends on the time of year. Living in Byron, peak summer, a chilled iced chocolate goes down pretty well!
Your favourite chocolate dessert?
Favourite chocolate dessert would have to be a flourless, rich and decadent chocolate cake with a dollop of cream.
Wackiest chocolate flavour you have tried?
Wackiest chocolate I’ve ever tried would definitely be a dark chocolate with wasabi… very interesting….a surprise to the palate!