In my pursuit of finding 100% chocolate I’ve come across some exquisite cacao beans from across the globe. My journey recently brought the company Good King Cacao across my path. And can you believe that I didn’t have to search around the world for them? In fact, the company is just a few hours north of me in Seattle, Washington.
If you are reading this blog, I can only assume that you are a chocolate fan just as I am. But I must say that I cannot bring myself to choose whether I prefer chocolate over the cacao beans they are made from.
Sadly, my enthusiasm for cacao beans is not shared by most of my chocolate loving friends. Try as I might to introduce them to the delectable flavor profiles of beans from around the world, my enthusiasm is often met with frowns and unfavorable comments.
Thankfully, Good King Cacao has mastered the art of making cacao beans more approachable by making bite-sized snacking cacao that their website describes as “complements, rather than competes with, chocolate”. Now those who are hesitant to try cacao beans can be gently eased into it while also being able to experience the health benefits of what many have referred to as a nutrient-dense “superfood”.
Their whole, peeled, roasted cacao beans imported from the Coagricsal Co-op in Honduras and Koptan Masagena, Indonesia currently come in five distinct flavors: Harmony 80% (Lightly Sweet & Salty), Harmony 65% (Sweeter and Saltier), Love 80% (Cinnamon & Spices) Strength 80% (Spicy Chili & Orange) and Joy 80% (Mint & Rosemary).
The Harmony 80% was my favorite of the bunch as the touch of sweetness and salt allowed me to still taste the natural flavor of the bean. Apparently this appealed to others as well as it was a 2018 Good Food Awards Winner.
Spoiler alert: There are a few new flavors on the horizon so keep your eyes peeled for what will be released later this year!
Aside from the unique flavors in their product line, the impact that Good King Cacao has on the communities they work with should encourage consumers to try their beans. Their efforts have resulted in the enhancement of the livelihoods of those in cocoa farming communities and created opportunities for women in the area of value-added food processing. It’s a win-win situation for the cocoa communities and the consumer.
Grab a sampler pack and do a "tasting flight" with their beans. Don’t be afraid to conduct your tasting out at the beach, a park, in your backyard, or while you are out on a hike. Yes, experience the flavors outdoors as you soak up some sunshine and get some fresh air as you can take these snacking beans anywhere since they don’t melt. (Don’t try that with a good bar of chocolate unless you don’t mind the mess.) In fact, I’d encourage you to find a unique and adventurous location to do a “tasting flight” and make the experience even more memorable!
P.S. And don't forget to check out my interview with Good King Cacao's founder, Kim Wilson (click here).