What exactly is bean-to-bar chocolate? is it better than chocolate ?
Bean-to-bar is a term used to inform the consumer but its use is currently not regulated at all. As I understand it, a bean-to-bar manufacturer oversees the chocolate production chain, from sourcing the beans to making the actual bars. Some may argue that a bean-to-bar chocolate-maker has to produce chocolate in small batches but there is no reason, in my mind, why the term should be associated with a specific production scale. At that point large corporation can call their chocolate bean to bar, it is not a quality label.
A bean-to-bar chocolate-maker will therefore be responsible for sourcing the beans before processing them through each of the following steps:
Yet it is possible to buy beans which have already been roasted, cracked, and winnowing. At that point you just have to grind and you can call it bean to bar, avoiding the conching to save time and money.
The whole process takes days.
The next question would be: how do you recognize a bean-to-bar chocolate? My answer: all chocolate comes from a bean ! It is completely impossible to recognize .
all chocolate are made from cacao beans, but, it is not always made by the company whose name appears on the bar. I like to say that chocolate-makers express their personality by making chocolate and chocolatiers by making chocolate confections.
Now comes the trickier part. Some makers actually make chocolate from a product called “cocoa mass” or “cocoa liquor”, which is what you call cocoa after it has been ground and melted.
in conclusion the bean to bar chocolate is more a marketing trick than anything else, a bad cacao bean, poorly stored will make a poor chocolate, if the beans has been roasted , grinded poorly it will also affect the taste. a bean to bar chocolate can be extremely bad.
there is now the” tree to bar chocolate”…. for the one growing himself the tree, sometimes all that sound absolutely ridiculous.