The Chocolate Life

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Tom's Comments

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At 4:26am on July 23, 2013, peter mengler said…

yes, i do buy beans from Daintree and carry credits of source on my label. As you'll appreciate for commercial confidentiality reasons i can't say much more. But glad you enjoyed the bars ,Vanuatu beans have improved greatly over the last year. Currently Bougainville & Solomon the most popular alas i won't have more Bougainville Beans till Sept

At 2:34am on January 30, 2013, Nat said…

Hi Tom,

So glad you got to try and enjoy our chocolate! We've been trying to get it into Monty's in Brisbane. Any suggestions there? We've sent them samples but can't seem to get them on the phone.



At 5:45pm on October 10, 2012, Nat said…

Hi Tom,

Great! We look forward to hosting him. We'll definitely have at least 2 cacao farm & chocolate factory tours and a bean-to-bar chocolate making class in January, with possibly some additional mini classes. Just tell your mate to keep an eye on and we'll post classes usually 1-2 months ahead.

At 9:28am on August 27, 2012, Bea Misa said…
Thanks Tom! We're just a year into our fermentary, but it's been great. Really love cacao <3
At 2:46pm on July 15, 2012, Tupaemanaia Steve Brown said…

Tx Tom.....sharing this with fellow chocophiles..."The flavour of the chocolate is pretty good and typical of the Samoan origin, full chocolate note with hints of nuts and honey, you will also find it will start to develope some fruity notes as the chocolate ages over the next three weeks or so. Quite an edible chocolate! The raw note in there and extra bitterness from the small beans could be easily masked by formulating as a dark milk chocolate."

Since then we have fermented longer (6-7 Nights), turned the fermenting beans daily in the latter half of fermentation, sorted the beans before exporting.....peter from thought the longer fermentation was disadvantageous? We now have Joshua bahen in WA making chocolate from Tavita;s cocoa beans here in Samoa carefully fermented 4 and 6 and 7 nights (3kg of each). Monsieur Truffe is also making chocolate this week from CSL (Cocoa Samoa Limited) beans again more carefully fermented for a longer duration (5-7 nights) by Talima.

Our growers are used to just making their own Koko Samoa paste, selling it locally in 250g cups for hot chocolate drinks, but are now having to consider obtaining the best chocolate precursors for premium export purposes.

Tx Tom

At 5:06am on July 14, 2012, Tupaemanaia Steve Brown said…

Hi Tom, You were the first to make chocolate from our SAMOA GOLD beans, thanks to Howard ( Can you please send me your Testimonial/results to as this same grower now has 5 tonne available..we inspected them yesterday after her organic certification follow-up visit....she's asking an additional $AUD5000/tonne through our Pacific Distributor, Richard David at and this is the price increase we want our growers to receive. Then, and only then, will we be able to produce more premium beans to make some of the best chocolate thru chocolatemakers like yourself. If you know of anybody keen to purchase 10 tonnes of PREMIUM SAMOA GOLD cocoa beans, they are now available. First come first served. And let me take this opportunity to thank you Tom..can we send you another sample as we have altered the fermentation technique to improve the quality even more? Cheers, Steve

At 12:45am on February 10, 2012, Tom Ohito Zukoshi said…

Hi Tom, Yes you got one of my best beans which happen to have very less butter content but the aroma.  We are fighting again this year with too much rain and the wind.  

At 5:29pm on July 24, 2011, Vera Hofman said…

Hi Tom,

Thanks for your comment! Nice to hear from you. I would love to hear more about your chocolate making experiences. By the way: I did not taste an Australian bean-to-bar chocolate so far....

Chocolove, Vera

At 5:30am on March 5, 2011, Sonia said…

Hi Tom,

Sorry it has taken me so long to reply to you. Any tips you have for me would be excellent. I have never made chocolate before. My daughter has a rare condition and can't have dairy so i am on a mission to make dairy-free chocolate. There is more and more in the shops but i love chocolate so thought it would be a fun challenge for me. I have ordered a melanger grinder which should arrive in the next week or two. I am sure i will have to taste a lot of bad chocolate before i get good at it but i will let you know how i go :) 

At 3:50am on February 1, 2011, Ice Blocks! said…

Made a raspberry and cacao ice block and its surprisingly good. Needs a few tweaks here and there but its definitely on the correct track to be a special.


Try frozen banana (LadyFingers), pomegranate juice and a couple of tablespoons of cacao powder as a smoothie in the morning. I love it. Always raises the mood.

At 4:43am on January 12, 2011, marcus said…
Hi tom,like wise good to see some else in adelaide who likes chocolate. Ah I make a mixture of chocolates like pralines,truffles,clusters etc. I mainly make them as a hobby but have made them for work recently and everyone loved them,which is good to hear. I have a passion for making them and are intrigued by different ways you can use chocolate. cheers marcus!
At 6:15pm on November 3, 2010, Lynn Green said…
Hi Tom, great to hear from you! Thank you for the feedback! I am pleased that you are enjoying it as much as I do. I am having so much fun with it all!! I will in the next 6 months be adding a shopping cart to my website so you do not have to take a detour to Bute. :) Alternatively, there are currently retail outlets and more to come in Adelaide.
I am very lucky to have a family community who support me so well. They are all on my marketing bandwagon! No better advertising than word of mouth! Yes Bute is the definition of Australian small country town. Imagine, 22 years ago, a corporate girl selling steel from Cincinnati Ohio visiting a man in Bute that she met and fell in love with in Barbados! Major major culture shock! Once I settled in, I thought, what have I done! But, I found my way and my purpose and niche. Isn't life interesting.

I hope your skim boarding competition went well!
At 4:26am on April 23, 2010, Theobroma man said…
Thanks Tom, good to be here!
At 2:03am on April 3, 2010, Kristina said…
Hi Tom

I'd love to hear/read more about your chocolate and wine pairing study, epecially re Madagascar origin.
At 10:18pm on March 22, 2010, Robert Frederick Rankin said…
Hi Tom. Love to hear how you started off and how you overcame any difficulties - Bob Rankin
At 1:45pm on August 25, 2009, Hector Velásquez said…
Estimate (A)
Seeking strategic alliances for the marketing of products such as organic or conventional cocoa liquor or cocoa for the gourmet industry, we are delighted to be able to attend.
We are able to offer high-quality cocoa in accordance with the requirements you need, ASE, conventional and organic, semi-finished cocoa, liquor, roasted and peeled grains NIBS roasted cocoa, we want to know what their requirements are refers fermentation, quality and quantity, our cocoa is ARRIBA National Fine or flavor (Creole), if there is interest in reaching an agreement we can send you more information, work plans and samples according to your requirements.
We are working integrally with the producers of cocoa, we have experience in the development of negotiation and management of quality control of export products, we are interested to know if you want Ecuadorian cocoa liquor, while I send my best wishes for commercial success.
Please contact us with any questions. We will be glad to assist you at any time and we can make to ensure the quality of the products you require, waiting to hear your comments, wishing all the best commercial.
Best regards,

Héctor Velásquez
I manage in Quality and Commercialization
Km. 10.5 Vía a Daule
Guayaquil - Ecuador
Skype: hecdave123
Cel: 593 99873860
At 3:06pm on June 19, 2009, Frank Schmidt said…

Send me an e-mail to : fhsdds at tri-lakes dot net

I've got a couple of more ideas on the chocolate that I've been working on.

I'll be back on-line Monday.

At 10:57pm on March 29, 2009, Alison Holland said…
I am awaiting 15kg from John but will try Tava when I'm finished with those. I would like to try and age some chocolate so I may go through those quite quickly.
My sister is holidaying in Australia - I'll see if she can find some of that icing sugar for me. Thanks
At 9:29pm on March 29, 2009, Alison Holland said…
Thanks Tom
I am very new to this game but I have been in contact with Tava and they said they are not yet up and running in their new premises. I am on their email list to notify when operational again but for now I have been ordering from John at Chocolate Alchemy. I have only made two batches and can't wait to make some more.
Question for you - I read somewhere that you can get icing sugar in Australia with no starch in it - is this true and would it be any good for chocolate?
At 9:00am on February 23, 2009, Jeff Pzena said…
Hi Tom,
I'm doing an incredibly small scale commercial operation in Belize called Cotton Tree Chocolate Company which is an off shoot of my jungle lodge called Cotton Tree Lodge. I was following your thread on winnowing but I couldn't see the pictures. Would you mind emailing me some pics? I'm at Thanks!

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