Not all chocolates are created equal. Not all raw chocolates cut the mustard so to speak. Fine & Raw does.
Tell you about Fine & Raw? OK.
“FINE & RAW was started in a notorious Williamsburg, Brooklyn artist loft by Daniel Sklaar. A nonsensical obsession with chocolate inspired Daniel to begin making small chocolate batches. He shared them with friends then started delivering them on his bicycle to small local purveyors. The stock was good – the purveyors wanted more”
The first slip of a morsel of F&R into my mouth occurred at the Williamsburg Brooklyn Flea foodie market named Smorgasburg (see what they did?!). Here I sampled a few morsels and became rather partial to their Sea Salt Chunky bar. I declare it is rich dark chocolate heaven with the perfect amount of sea salt to offset the subtle sweetness that lets the cacao shine. I loved it so much I tracked down the factory to the uber trendy Brooklyn district of Bushwick. The smell inside was insane. I inhaled so much and so deeply I nearly had to grab one of their brown paper bags to stop me hyperventilating!
If you are in Brooklyn I strongly suggest you get yourself over to the Fine & Raw HQ and meet these bean to bar makers. It is a fun thing to do and there are a few vegan cafes and even a vegan bar just around the corner. Brooklyn has a very different feel to Manhattan and Bushwick and nearby Williamsburg are a great place to shop, eat and hang out. Check out the graffiti around there, too.
Back to Fine & Raw…They source their beans from small sustainable farmers in countries like Columbia and Madagascar. They have a little cafe area where you can sip a hot drink, eat far too much chocolate (you can sample their amazing flavours of ‘bonbon’ ‘lucuma & vanilla’ and ‘blueberry’ ‘chipotle’ and even one with cacao nibs in, to name but a few), and watch the chocolate making shenanigans unfold before your eyes.
What makes this chocolate ‘raw’? Well, it means it is not heated above a certain temperature and so it mains it’s flavour profile and maintains it’s nutrients.