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Kia ora Koutou!

We have a small business in Aoteaora (NZ) hand making raw chocolate.  I would like to buy a stone grinder so I can start to work with the beans and also make a range of nut butters.  Can anyone give us some advice on which machine would be best, as I read that the Spectra 40 was not good for raw chocolate due to the temp it goes to as the conch time is longer for raw......Can anyone shed some light our way,  Mauri Ora!

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Hello Pixie!
I wish I had the information on what kind of stone grinder and or conch/refining machine to buy.
I currently own and operate a raw, vegan, organic chocolate company based in Big Sur Ca. I am also looking for words of wisdom on what type of conch/refining/stone grinder machine would be best to purchase to produce my own cacao paste ( keeping the temperature as low as possible) .I am looking to buy a tempering machine
(10-20lb capacity) as well and could use some advice. I appreciate the position you are in and hopefully we can discover a solution together!
~ Jade

Kia ora Jade,

Yey, nothing as yet but would love to keep in touch as we are on the same path.  Do you have a website so we can see a bit more of your beautiful raw chocolate.  I will email John (see below) and let you know if he comes back with anything of interest.



John Nanci over at sells some "home scale" melangeurs used to make chocolate.  Maybe that would work for you.

If you go to Google images and look for "wet grinders" you will see many different options.  I do not know if they have anything different from the usual models when used for chocolates, but there are made in India and used to make things like the big lentil and flour pancake for masala dosai.    If you have a reasonable size Indian population where you are check at the Indian Supermarkets ... this are very common kitchen appliance in India -- I also need one - but I am in Costa Rica.  Good luck!

Indian wetgrinders look similar to the melangers. The similarity ends with appearance. Indian wetgrinders are made for making idli dosa, and each batch of rice or lentil takes only 30 minutes. For chocolate, cocoa nibs have to be ground for 48 hours or more to get the 15 micron size. Melangers are modified to keep the motor from heating up and to keep the cocoa beans from overheating. There are lot of design and engineering improvements in melangers to make them suitable for grinding cocoa nibs.

We at sell melangers for small scale - 8-10 lbs of cocoa nibs and Grindeurs for medium scale -to grind up to 65lbs of cocoa nibs. We ship them worldwide and in the voltage you need.

Our customers have used these melangers and Grindeurs to grind raw or roasted cocoa nibs for more than five years.

The melanger from Cocoatown is much sturdier than the current production of Santha grinders which constantly bust their bearings, have belts burn up, or motors burn out as grinding chocolate in them is not what they were designed to do. We've been using Santhas full time for 9 months and they  have had to have almost every piece replaced, starting with only the 3rd batch of chocolate we ground in them. The cocoatowns seems to get a much smoother (lower micron size) grind in them as well.


We don't own any cocoatowns yet, but I have seen them in action often, and tasted the chocolate coming out of them and it is much nicer.




Nat Bletter, PhD

Chocolate R&D

Madre Chocolate


Kia ora Nat

Thanks for the feedback, we were so close to buying a Santha but hesitated because of the cost for us to import into Aotearoa.  I knew further reshearch needed to be done.  I have been in touch with Cocao Town about there machines. Thanks again. 



I  have some questions if you would send me a personal email.


Thanks -- Susana

Thank you for the feedback! The melanger from Cocoatown sounds like a really good machine.
I will be looking into purchasing one of those! ; )
Has anyone measured the temperature of the melange in the melanger from Cocoatown during operation? Is it suitable for raw chocolate processing (e.g. not going over 104 F (40 C))?
It most definitely WILL go above 104 F.  I've measured up to 140F with a laser thermometer.  Next batch we do in a small grinder I'll take a picture.
Thanks. What other comparable equipment options are there if raw processing is required? One of their bigger models with frequency control?


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