Pinalum, Malekula Island, Vanuatu - Drinking Chocolate
Bronze medal winner, Academy of Chocolate 2023 International Awards
This moreish, bean to bar, craft drinking chocolate began with cacao beans grown by the dedicated farmers of Pinalum, Vanuatu. Then in our little foundry, we crafted the cacao together with only one other ingredient; organic cane sugar, to create a chocolate that highlights the harvest’s mellow personality.
Two ingredients, nothing else. Comfort in every sip. Enjoy.
Made from ground 70% dark bean to bar chocolate, with comforting tasting notes of moreish malt and silky caramel.
Foundry Drinking Chocolate is delicious made with water, milk or the plant based milk of your choice.
The drinking chocolate is packaged in a home compostable resealable pouch.
Ingredients: Cacao Beans & Organic Cane Sugar.
Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Soy Free and Vegan.
Located on the lush and remote Malekula Island, the small group of famers from Pinalum Village have been specialising in fine flavour cacao since 2015.
Organised by the tireless Olivier Fernadez from Gaston Cacao and managed by local villager Lily Buktan, this well run operation is challenging the traditional supply chain model that drives commodity prices down. With their work, the price that farmers individually get in hand is up to two to three times above the previous market practice.
When Olivier visits Pinalum, it’s a journey to get there. He loads his dirt bike onto the overnight ferry from Port Vila, then it’s a 30 minute ride along coral, gravel and sand roads, which get very muddy during the rainy season. Once at the village it’s incredibly lush, close to the coast, and surrounded by palm trees. After the days work it's a social time, sharing food by the fire and drinking kava.
At Pinalum the boss is Lily. She oversees the fermentation and drying station, and works with her extended family to do the fermentation, drying, packing, storage and payroll.
Since Olivier started working with the farmers in 2015, he has deconstructed the traditional industrial model, and works to pay the famers as much as possible for growing fine flavour cacao. This involved building fermentation stations, drying stations and training individual farmers. Side projects have been developed to provide basic water and electricity services.