Mission Chocolate’s Two Rivers is not your ordinary 70% dark chocolate bar. It’s actually two chocolate bars, comprised of two distinct Brazilian cocoa beans, masterfully crafted into one. The deep, dark brown part of the bar has fudge brownie and chocolate gelato notes, whereas the lighter shaded area, made from Catongo beans, boasts citrus notes that unfold within an exceptionally creamy texture. These beans lack the dark pigments found in most cocoa and are responsible for the somewhat reddish tones that make up lighter half of the Two Rivers chocolate bar.
Chocolate maker Arcelia Gallardo named her creation “Two Rivers” as an homage to a memorable boat ride on the Amazon River in the Amazon Rainforest. The chocolate bar is a representation of the intersection where the Rio Negro and the Rio Solimões meet, yet flow separately side-by-side for miles.
Observing these bodies of water from a boat as they merged into the Amazon - the largest and most forceful river in the world - made an impact on Arcelia. In her mind, those rivers joining forces to become one dynamic flow was a metaphor for Brazil, where many origins, languages, cultures and flavors meld to form a single country.
The beauty of craft chocolate, and one of the many things that separates it from Industrial chocolate, is that is has heart and soul. It gives the taster something to think about. This gorgeous, magical and delicious chocolate is not just a bar...it is poetry, or perhaps a meditation...a gift to savor and reflect upon with awe.
Mission Chocolate bars are a rare find in the United States. I am so proud to welcome a few of Arcelia’s gorgeous, inspiring and luscious creations to the Barometer collection. For the love of chocolate, please take this opportunity to savor one (or more!) of these precious gems!
Arcelia Gallardo is based in São Paulo, Brazil. She grew up in California, and thanks to her Mexican heritage, savoring authentic drinking chocolate was a regular household ritual. Arcelia was quite shocked to discover the candy that her peers referred to as “chocolate” since her palate was unaccustomed to overtly sweet and simplistic flavors. She ate this candy, but to her heart, mind and palate, it bore no resemblance to chocolate.
After graduating from college, Arcelia became fascinated by the history of chocolate and earned her living teaching people about cacao. Before dedicating her life to chocolate, Arcelia traveled through Europe for five months to learn about desserts, pastries and chocolate. That adventure sealed the deal. After savoring and studying the best-loved desserts of 16 countries (and magically losing weight in the process), Arcelia moved to Berkeley, California and became the chocolatier of her very own shop.
The shop was successful and she enjoyed her work, but she became ever more curious about crafting chocolate bars directly from the bean rather than melting down chocolate to create bonbons. She visited her neighbors at nearby (and world renowned) Dandelion Chocolate and requested an internship! It was a surprising move for someone as well-established as Arcelia, and even the fine folks at Dandelion were puzzled by her desire to study bean-to-bar chocolate making, but they graciously invited her in and trained her...so well, in fact, that they wanted her to stay on and continue making chocolate for them.
Arcelia had other plans, though. She and her husband were expecting to move to Brazil and she knew she would start her own bean-to-bar chocolate company there. The name she decided upon was “Mission” as an homage to her former San Franciscan district where she lived and learned at Dandelion to transform beans into magical bars of deliciousness.
- Ingredients: Cacao Beans, Organic Sugar, Cocoa Butter
- Net Weight: 60 g. / 2.1 oz.
- Country of Origin: Brazil