Meet The Makers: 500 Smallholder Farmers


We recently released Voyager's Getaway, our imperial pastry porter made with coconut from Indonesia, vanilla from Papua New Guinea, and cocoa nibs from Uganda. Each of these quality ingredients has its own story to tell and today we wanted to share that of our direct trade cocoa nibs which have been used in Voyager's Getaway as well as Forest Fortress.⠀

The wet cocoa is purchased from over 500 contracted smallholder farmers along one stretch of road running through the Galiraya, Kisonko and Buganikere communities. This Rwenzururu sub-region of Uganda sits at 3,000 feet above sea level and borders the DR Congo, the Rwenzori Mountain Range and the Semuliki National Park. ⠀


The fermentation facility is located in a converted Bread & Breakfast in the village of Bumate at the base of the hills leading into the mountains. With a shortage of available land in the district, the site is designed to take advantage of all possible available sunshine while limiting runoff from heavy rainfall. The paired box fermentation is built with eucalyptus timber which sourced from local timber plantations.⠀

Each bag of fresh cacao is evaluated and hand sorted for quality prior to filling. Any cacao that is lower grade is separate and the beans are then sampled and cut. Prior to drying, the beans are again separated based on quality of fermentation and consistency within the box. Once the beans have dried, they are sampled and cut before blending.⠀

This mixture of varieties combined with frequent collaboration with Daniel O’Doherty of Cacao Services, produces a unique profile that we are humbled to use in our beer. ⠀


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