THE WORLD'S RAREST AND MOST HISTORICAL CACAO
Archeologists have traced the origins of the cacao tree to Ecuador, where they found evidence of cacao domestication dating back at least 5,300 years among the Mayo-Chinchipe culture. Nacional cacao traces its genetic lineage back to this part of history.
By the dawn of the 21st century, this famed variety was believed to be extinct. In the valley of Piedra de Plata, we found nine old-growth cacao trees that have been confirmed by DNA tests to be 100% pure Nacional.
Every To'ak bar is produced by hand with cacao coming from the oldest trees from that valley.
CHOCOLATE LIKE THE FINEST WINES AND SPIRITS
As tree-to-bar chocolate makers, we draw heavily from the techniques and tradition of both winemakers and whisky distilleries. As with wine, the flavor characteristics of dark chocolate vary according to the soil and climate in which the cacao was grown. At To’ak, we make our chocolate to express the land and weather idiosyncrasies of each specific year.
THE WORLD'S FIRST CHOCOLATE AGING PROGRAM
As we’ve learned from whisky makers, about 70% of the flavor of a well-aged whisky is derived from the barrel in which it was aged. Extractable flavor compounds in the barrel are what give the whisky its defining features. To’ak is the first tree-to-bar chocolate maker that comprehensively applies this principle to chocolate.