The next time you reach for a box of chocolates, don’t gobble it up. Instead, take some time to savour that praline or slab. From the flavour, aroma, and texture, there is much to appreciate about the nuanced and layered notes of chocolate.
To get the most out of chocolates, we chat with Yilina Leong, co-founder of Fossa Chocolate, a homegrown craft chocolate-maker, which specialises in bean-to-bar chocolate. The company makes chocolate from scratch, from souring raw cocoa beans from around the world, roasting and winnowing the cacao, refining and moulding molten chocolate into small batches and hand-wrapping the bars in letter-pressed packaging.
Fossa Chocolate sources its cocoa from all over the world, from countries such as Peru, Mexico, Ecuador, to Indonesia and the Philippines, boasting vastly different flavour profiles.
Sustainability and ethical farming play a big part in ensuring how that cacao is selected. Leong’s team sources cacao from estates that engage in agroforestry, a practice of cultivating the main crop alongside other native trees and crops. This enables wildlife to continue to thrive in their natural habitat and ensures greater productivity for farmers in the long run.
The company is also reducing its carbon footprint by turning the cacao husks, accumulated through the winnowing process, into compost. Besides sourcing a diverse range of cacao beans, Fossa Chocolate also creates chocolate bars in unconventional and brow-raising flavours such as Honey Orchid Dancong Hongcha, Black Truffle and Satay Sauce. For Christmas, Fossa Chocolate is introducing new flavours such as the sweet and umami Tomato & Maqaw Pepper, and Apple and Cinnamon Oat Milk.
Leong shares tips on how to identify quality chocolate and ways of appreciating and tasting chocolates like a true gourmand.