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Supermarket Spy: Firefly Chocolate with Orange and Rose

Quetzacoatl, the Aztec god of cacao, wants to smash your Hershey bar with his mighty fist.

Firefly Chocolate from the town of Windsor, in Sonoma County, is 85% organic cacao. Photo: Heather Irwin
Firefly Chocolate from the town of Windsor, in Sonoma County, is 85% organic cacao. Photo: Heather Irwin

Firefly Chocolate with Orange and Rose, $4.99, Community Market

Quetzacoatl, the Aztec god of cacao, wants to smash your Hershey bar with his mighty fist. Because chocolate was never meant to be the sugary, waxy thing its become, but a dark, bitter, magical concoction mixed with spices and wine into a strength-building tincture.

Here in Sonoma County, Jonas Ketterle pays homage to the old ways of chocolate-making with his Windsor-based chocolateria Firefly Chocolate. Inspired by the chocolate-making traditions of the Zapotec town of Teotitlan del Valle, Ketterle learned how the locals fire-roasted and hand-peeled the beans “within sight of their sacred mountain,” stone grinding and sweetening the powder with honey.

After two years of testing, mostly in his own kitchen using organic cacao from Belize, Firefly Chocolates was born. Using coconut palm sugar as a sweetner and maintaining the vitality of the chocolate by roasting it at lower temperatures, he had a product that Quetzacoatl might actually recognize.

85% cocao (that’s really dark), the resulting organic chocolate bar is more like a fine wine than a Hershey Kiss. Bitter tannins are mellowed by the perfumed flavors of rose and orange, making this a bar you’ll savor rather than snarf in a single sitting. The chocolate gods approve.

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