Quality – Alfred Ritter on the quality of his squares.
Dear chocolate lovers,
quality is created in the field, on the plantation, in the warehouse, and in the factory. Quality is created when working the earth, planting, harvesting, fermenting, drying, storing, and careful processing in the factory.
A good bar of chocolate goes through a long and varied process before it lies ready to be sold on the shelf. The most important part of this process takes place on the land. One can only make very good chocolate from really good produce. The expertise and skills of many people are also necessary.
It requires experience and devotion to care for a cocoa tree. Harvesting its fruits and removing the beans is done by hand. The fermentation process beneath banana leaves, in the tropical heat, must be carefully observed and halted at just the right time. Drying cocoa beans in the sun without letting tropical rains get them wet requires attention and speed. Carefully and evenly roasting the beans, peeling them, and grinding them is a finely tuned technical process.
California raisins enjoy unique climatic conditions. The seedless grapes ripen on watered earth in a hot, dry climate. They are carefully cut from the vine, laid next to it, and left to dry in the sun without being moved. This ensures that the grapes remain undamaged and that they retain their wonderful flavour.
I could go on like this about almond and hazelnut plantations, about pollinating vanilla flowers, about dairy cows on pastures, about peanuts, sugar beet, coconuts, and peppermint.
A lot of knowledge and skill goes into the ingredients before they reach us here in Waldenbuch. Even then, it is only those ingredients of the finest quality that continue the journey into our chocolate. Different varieties of cocoa, milk, and sugar are mixed according to tried, tested, and constantly refined recipes. They are rolled according to precise specifications and conched for many hours. Further ingredients, like nuts, marzipan, raisins, and rum are added, depending on the recipe, at precisely maintained temperatures. They are then poured into bars.
After a precisely defined cooling process, the bars are packed in special, impermeable, single material packaging. We also take a lot of care regarding the final phase, making sure that our chocolates reach you quickly and freshly.
A lot of what I have described could be done much more simply and cheaply. We do not do that. Why not? Because we enjoy making especially fine chocolate.
Try it yourself. It’s good!
Alfred T. Ritter
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