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Golden Hour Books

Wild Chocolate: Across the Americas in Search of Cacao's Soul (10/8/24)

Wild Chocolate: Across the Americas in Search of Cacao's Soul (10/8/24)

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From James Beard Award-winner Rowan Jacobsen, the thrilling story of the farmers, activists, and chocolate makers fighting all odds to revive ancient cacao and produce the world’s finest bar.

When Rowan Jacobsen first heard of a chocolate bar made entirely from wild Bolivian cacao, he was skeptical. The waxy mass-market chocolate of his childhood had left him indifferent to it, and most experts believed wild cacao had disappeared from the rainforest centuries ago. But one dazzling bite of Cru Sauvage was all it took. Chasing chocolate down the supply chain and back through history, Jacobsen travels the rainforests of the Amazon and Central America to find the chocolate makers, activists, and indigenous leaders who are bucking the system that long ago abandoned wild and heirloom cacao in favor of high-yield, low-flavor varietals preferred by Big Chocolate.

What he found was a cacao renaissance. As his guides pulled the last vestiges of ancient cacao back from the edge of extinction, they’d forged an alternative system in the process—one that is bringing prosperity back to local economies, returning fertility to the land, and protecting it from the rampages of cattle farming. All the while, a new generation of bean-to-bar chocolate makers are racing to get their
hands on these rare varietals and produce extraordinary chocolate displaying a diversity of flavors no one had thought possible. Full of vivid characters, vibrant landscapes, and surprising history, Wild Chocolate promises to be as rich, complex, and addictive as good chocolate itself.

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