Crédit Photo : Thomas Dhellemmes

La Maison du Chocolat unveils its new 100% plant-based collections

Nicolas Cloiseau lives in a world where chocolate is a living subject. In his way of revealing the invisible, the Chef persists in the challenges of naturalness. Two years after his Well-Being collection and his chocolates without butter or cream, the story continues with two new 100% vegan collections.

In its momentum, the step seemed obvious. Why shouldn’t these precious ganaches go vegan? It is from this question that the idea for the two new 100% plant-based collections were born: “Naturellement Fruit” and “Terres Cacao”.

Naturellement Fruit

Not so simple to make these fruity ganaches in a vegetable version without compromising on taste. And yet … 

Everything has been redesigned and reworked in detail. Who knows that the emblematic recipe of Salvador, Andalusia, Maracuja, Chiberta or Noir de Cassis has become vegan, all are unanimous on the intact pleasure of the fruit. The melting texture is as silky as ever. The increased energy of the taste of the fruit vibrates in the heart of chocolate that is more natural than ever. 

The secret? A fruit doubly sweetened with agave and maple syrups. Free from cream and butter, which usually alter its taste, chocolate expresses itself more freely, with renewed intensity. Zoom in on these little fruity little wonders.

Vegan blackcurrant

In this ganache, the pulp of blackcurrant from Burgundy, prolonged with an infusion of blackcurrant buds, gives a bite to a deep fruit scented with a floral note that lingers in the mouth and transports the taste buds. Composition: dark chocolate, a hint of coconut milk chocolate, blackcurrant from Burgundy, blackcurrant buds infusion. 

Vegan Chiberta

Delicately blended with orange, the chocolate reveals all of the natural taste of the fruit. This dark chocolate ganache takes on orange tones, in its finest nuances of taste. The freshness of finely zested orange juice combined with chocolate echoes a vitamin-rich sweetness. Composition: Dark chocolate, a hint of coconut milk chocolate, orange zest and juice. 

Vegan Maracuja

This black ganache infused with passion fruit juice and twisted with coconut milk chocolate, reveals a fresh heart of passion fruit. A particularly greedy and soft taste, not very sweet, which plays with freshness, acidity and roundness. Composition: dark chocolate fermented with passion fruit juice, a touch of coconut milk chocolate, passion fruit puree. 

Andalusia vegan

Andalusia black ganache brings out the best of the lemon. Bright, fresh and sparkling, the yellow lemon expresses all its fruity and tangy power, without bitterness. Chocolate full of finesse and roundness. Composition: dark chocolate, lemon zest and juice.

Salvador vegan

A fusion of pure fruit and chocolate, this dark chocolate ganache with raspberry pulp underlines the natural character of this delicate fruit. The dark chocolate gives way to the fruit in a beautiful acidity, the chocolate raspberry is round and long in the mouth. Composition: dark chocolate, a hint of coconut milk chocolate, raspberry puree.

Terres Cacao

Nicolas Cloiseau celebrates the primary taste of chocolate in all its expression and the Terres Cacao collection is a logical continuation of his work on naturalness.

Reinventing mineral water ganache? Since his inspiring choices from the Bien-Être collection, Nicolas Cloiseau has been doing it again, associating the unthinkable. With water, it gains in power and clarity of taste, he thwarts received ideas in an inverted intensity scale, he transcribes the intimate and deep taste of the original cocoa. He knew instinctively that the feeling would be increased tenfold, that our benchmarks would be shaken up. 

Free of animal fat, the four plant-based black ganaches from Terres Cacao reveal a raw taste that is truer than nature. Instead of butter and cream, it is natural mineral water combined with hazelnut oil, which makes its way along the route of fine cocoas.

So that the taste makes us dream, Nicolas Cloiseau has sourced his new aromatic typicities in the light of committed craft. 

And it is to Latin America that the Chef decided to take us. It is a region where the rarest cocoas in the world are concentrated. The tannic, vegetal and licorice tones of chocolate reflect the precious work of the growers of the world’s finest cocoas at the heart of a virtuous ecosystem.

Ecuador 75%

On both sides of the Andes Cordillera, between the Pacific and the Amazon, the volcanic lands of Ecuador are full of exceptional biodiversity. In the far east, in the heart of the Ecuadorian Amazon, Sacha cocoa, part of the Forastero family, is cultivated near the province of Orellana in the Amazon basin. 

The rounded notes of this 75% pure Ecuadorian black ganache are surprisingly smooth. Here, Ecuadorian cocoa unveils the velvety sensations of plant-based dark chocolate that coats the palate with a beautiful length in the mouth.

Based in Ecuador, the company República del Cacao certified “B-Corp” (label awarded to companies that are committed from a societal and environmental point of view – Editor’s note) creates authentic Latin American chocolate while preserving the traditional techniques of local communities. Committed at the source, for the protection of fine cocoa and farmers of its region, it develops an inclusive, fair and sustainable system for all. 

Photo Credit: Thomas Dhellemmes

Belize 75%

For thousands of years, the fertile lands of Belize have been marked by cocoa cultivation. Amongst the mountains, in the heart of Mayan archaeological remains, the Xibun River Estate plantation lies on the banks of the river of the same name. Its cocoa from original collections planted in the 1970s benefits from a unique blend of diversity. The terroir of this unique ecosystem produces a cocoa with unusual aromatic characteristics and spicy notes. Sweeter than its percentage suggests, the acidity of the pure vegan black ganache from Belize 75% lengthens its woody and licorice notes in an almost toasted cocoa finish.

Valrhona is a partner of Maya Moutain Cacao, a pioneer of responsible cocoa in Belize. Together they participate in the rehabilitation of the Xibun River Estate plantation, which employs up to 48 people, contributes to the employment of women in the plantation and to the sustainability of the cocoa industry in Belize.

Photo Credit: Thomas Dhellemmes

Peru 63%

In the heart of the Andes Cordillera, in the extreme north of Peru, the landscapes of the Bosque Seco de la Sierra de Piura preserve the endemic Gran Blanco variety of cocoa, from the Criollo family. Planted only in the landlocked region of the Rio Bigote valley, this white bean cocoa grand cru reveals subtle aromas of black fruits. In addition to its colour, the aromatic characteristics of this terroir reveal an unsuspected intensity for 63% cocoa chocolate.

Thanks to plants from their conservatory garden, the cooperative of 7000 Norandino producers has rehabilitated the rare variety of Gran Blanco cocoa in the Alto Piura valley. Today all these producers are Fairtrade and Organic certified. 

Photo Credit: Thomas Dhellemmes

Grenada Island 65%

Island of cocoa and spices, Grenada is located in the extreme south of the Caribbean archipelago. In the heart of lush vegetation, on volcanic soil, a cooperative of self-sufficient families organized into small family plantations, sometimes of a few dozen trees, has been cultivating cocoa in their “Creole gardens” for several generations. Over the decades, they have selected their own population of cocoa trees by propagating the cocoa with cuttings. Powerful cocoa, rich in an unusual fermentation and drying process, at the origin of its typical camphor notes. 

The Grenada Cocoa Association, the only cooperative of cocoa producers on the island of Grenada, brings together 2,500 producers who cultivate as a family according to an agroforestry model combining cocoa, spices, fruits and vegetables. All of its members are committed to sustainable agricultural practices. 

Photo Credit: Thomas Dhellemmes

The cocoas of its four new vegan black ganaches are 100% traceable, 90% of which to producers. The eco-designed box, covered with “cocoa-paper” made from cocoa pod fibres, is 100% recyclable and made in France.

Naturally concerned, La Maison du Chocolat is committed to uncompromising pleasure. Around a minimalist aesthetic, Nicolas Cloiseau have brought the DNA of La Maison into the green. For him, the future is being built today with innovative proposals in tune with the times, convinced that an “after” can be even better than a “before”.

Translated by Malvika Kathpal

Learn more :

Naturally Fruit Collection: €27 per 16 pieces – Vegan fruity ganaches: €1.30 per piece – Available in shops and online from May 2021 Terres Cacao Collection: 40€ the box of 24 pure origin vegan black ganaches – Available in shops and online in spring 2021 Website

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