DAVAO CITY – Three Filipino premium dark chocolate makers have been recognized by the Great Taste Awards, the world’s largest food and drink awards organized by the United Kingdom (UK)-based The Guild of Fine Food.
Rosario’s Delicacies, owned by Emmanuel and Mary Grace Belviz from Calinan, Davao City, clinched a one-star Great Taste award for its unsweetened dark chocolate out of the 12,777 products from 106 countries, according to The Guild of Fine Food website.
The award-giving body described the “unique cocoa liquor tablets” with “deep rich mahogany color,” which “made a very smooth and velvety drink.”
“An authentic chocolate product that has a genuine raw chocolate flavor and smooth texture. When lightly sweetened, the chocolate flavor is mellow and lasting with gentle liquorice notes,” it added.
Other bean-to-bar chocolate makers – Calamba, Laguna-based Auro Chocolate and Metro Manila-based Theo and Philo Chocolate Factory, who source raw cacao beans from Mindanao – were also recognized for their wide array of dark chocolate entries.
Auro Chocolate won a two-star award for 85 percent Mana–Single Estate, and one-star award for 42 percent Milk Chocolate, 77 percent Dark Chocolate, 85 percent Regalo-Single Varietal, Peanut Hot Chocolate, 55 percent Dark Chocolate, and 55 percent Dark Chocolate w/ Arabica Coffee. Meanwhile, Theo and Philo Chocolate Factory bagged two-star award for Theo & Philo 60 percent Dark Chocolate with Ginger and Mint, and one-star award 90 percent Dark Chocolate, 70 percent Dark Chocolate, and Hot Chocolate.
Early this month, Davao City had been officially declared as the “Cacao Capital of the Philippines,” being the largest cacao producer in the country.
The city produced 2,289 metric tons (MT) or at least 34.15 percent of the total 6,703 MT of dried cacao beans last year, data from Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said.
Davao del Norte came second highest with 1,372 MT, followed by Davao del Sur with 1,163 MT, Davao de Oro with 572.57 MT, and Davao Oriental with 561.57 MT, according to PSA.
The region’s combined cacao production comprised 78.96 percent of the country’s total production of 8,488.60 last year.