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Review Firetree Rich Volcanic Chocolate - dairy free, nut free and vegan

Firetree Rich Volcanic Chocolate dairy free, nut free and vegan
(gifted sample)

I grew up without decent chocolate, the free from alternative was carob and for a child it wasn't a pleasurable experience. Now the options for dairy free milk chocolates are plentiful however I often find dark chocolate features the dreaded "may contain milk" label. 

My taste buds have certainly changed over the years as sweet sugary white chocolate no longer appeals and I enjoy a richer cocoa taste. I was intrigued when Firetree approached me. The beautiful packaging is an immediate enticement but it also meets my dairy free and vegan requirements. I also felt the high cocoa percentages would certainly have the potential to challenge my taste buds and take me out of my comfort zone.
Firetree Rich Volcanic Chocolate dairy free, nut free and vegan
Putting allergies to one side, you may wonder what else makes Firetree unique. The cocoa is sourced from single estates on the islands of the southern Pacific and Oceania. This region is surrounded by a circle of 452 volcanos and known as the 'Ring of Fire'. As you may imagine the soil is fertile and mineral rich so the cocoa trees thrive in this environment and from this derives the wonderful name 'Firetree'. With the expertise of local farmers and craftsman, Firetree produces chocolate in a similar way to making fine wines as each estate has their own unique tasting cocoa beans. 

Sustainability - Instead of dealing with our farmers through agents, we go to them directly. By cutting out the middle man, the farmers get more for their hard work and quality. We pay a substantial premium above the market rate, giving our farmers the chance to provide for their families and commit to high agricultural standards that makes for great cocoa. There are a few reasons we like to pay this premium. Firstly because we believe that if you want a great tasting chocolate you have to be prepared to pay extra for top quality. Secondly, it means that the farmers can afford to maintain high ethical and sustainable standards, and still provide for their families. Finally, this allows us to mutually agree the bean quality.

 

Firetree Tasting Bar Gift Box
I received the new Firetree Tasting Bar Gift Box. This stunning package contains seven single estate 25g tasting bars, ranging from 69% to 100% cocoa. This gift set is an experience which needs to be savoured. Even without prompting I was appreciating the all important 'snap' of the bar, placing on the tongue and enjoying the full bodied flavour. As you open the individual sleeve packaging, it mentions the tasting notes of the bar. As I ate my chocolate I tried to appreciate suggested flavours, sometimes you will agree and other times you won't. 

The Tasting Bar set has allowed me to uncover the unique flavours of cocoa beans from Papua New Guniea, Solomon Islands, Madagscar, Vanuatu and Philippines. I've discovered I'm someone who favours 60-70% cocoa. The 80% has taken me out of my comfort zone with surprising results but 100% was a step too far as I can't handle the bitter taste. This is exactly what you'd want to gain from a tasting collection. 

I am happy to recommend Firetree chocolate. I honestly believe this is a chocolate company that stands head and shoulders above others. This is chocolate which I have shared with my husband, who has no dietary needs and he hasn't said "you can tell this is free from". I would happily purchase Firetree and gift to friends and family (spoiler alert to my chocolate lovers you're getting this for your next birthday!).

Sarah x