Returning to My Blog Part 1

Hi, Villakuyaya fans and friends.  I haven’t written an official blog post since 2016, and since then across many chocolate shows around the world, many new friendships, new chocolatier’s, new customers and people who have tried my chocolate whether they loved it or not, so much has changed in my life along this path, that I wanted to share and update my followers.

Personally, just a few months back I married my husband in a ceremony in upstate New York near Woodbury Commons.  At 42 I am now a wife for the first time and am very happy.

In addition, a little before I turn 43 I should be giving birth to my first child, a son.  Something I have dreamed of my whole life and is so close to becoming a reality lord willing.

In terms of chocolate, we are still a young, growing small business, fighting to compete in a tough, competitive field with edgy new companies, and amazing chocolate popping up almost every week.  There are so many amazing new products, new chocolatiers, new bars and great chocolate in the industry at this time, it is hard to obtain and hold your customer's attention and loyalty, as at any time they might taste the new next greatest bar, inclusion or idea.   

With that being said, I appreciate all of my loyal customers, friends and Villakuyaya Organic Dark Chocolate lovers.  It’s a passion project for me to produce these bars in Ecuador and bring my bars to you around the world.  From selecting the finest Arriba Nacional cocoa beans, through the various steps of production, across the packaging, logistics and finding a way to interact with customer’s on different levels, it is an honor to try to bring my bars to your coffee tables, or maybe on your couch binge-watching your favorite TV shows, or paired with a glass of wine to make the evening restful and relaxing, or in whatever way you get to enjoy my chocolate.  

Northwest Festival, Seattle

Northwest Festival, Seattle

I’ll have some more posts coming soon, as I rededicate myself to digital interactions with loyal friends and customers, but also hopefully some new people who have grown to love or try my chocolate, and want to know what is going on in the chocolate world, or my little part of it.

Thanks for reading, and hope everyone is well and enjoying some chocolate.



XAVIER PELLICER AND THE ORGANIC MARKET

Xavier Pellicer is Catalan Chef with two Michelin stars, his philosophy about cooking is a modus vivendi of his Ayurveda diet.

In spite of being the creative artist, delivers all the attention to seasonal vegetables seducing the palates of all the guests.

He is passionate about experiencing each of their dishes through the sensations that transmits your heart.

Organic Market Barcelona

The idea of its creators is to devise a supermarket which offers Eco friendly 100% organic crops and other products cosmetics, dietetics and yoga products, reaching a wide variety as nutritious.

Also in the latest additions Woki Family Tribe, added the proposal of gastronomy of the Chef Xavier Pellicer reflected in the merger of two spaces that transmit healthy and natural life with organic food.

Inside the restaurant is 100% ecological market highlighting the best seasonal products, thus creating an ideal place for lovers of natural food, the taste and simplicity of its dishes instead.

 

Villakuyaya in the Organic Market ?

Villakuyaya has been considered as a possible candidate of organic selection to display your most demanding palates, with the approval of the Chef Xavier Pellicer is sure to join the Organic Market.

VillaKuyaya's advisor chef Idaly Farfan gives a talk at the second Congress for Continental Patrimony

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On February 8th, the second Congress of Continental Patrimony was held at the Bicentennial Center in Quito Ecuador.  

The talk "Cocoa and Chocolate Andino " was dictated by Idaly Farfán , chef and technical advisor on chocolate and cocoa for VillaKuyaya LLC. Farfán conducted a dynamic talk in which she  explained the process by which the product passes starting from harvest to become artisanal chocolate.

Vintage chocolate

   "Fine" or "flavour" beans, the top-quality varieties used in gourmet products because of their superior taste, account for only 5% of the world's cocoa production, but demand is increasing.  Much like wine, chocolate reflects the flavours of the region where cocoa beans are grown, and how they are dried and fermented.   Over the last decade, as the demand for more flavourful cocoa has risen, Ecuador has emerged as the pre-eminent exporter of fine beans.  It is a favourite destination for globetrotting chocolatiers in search of the best, and cocoa production has also become a sustainable source of income for Ecuador's farmers.  "Farmers didn't use to pay much attention to cocoa," says Ignacio Estupinan, a 66-year-old farmer who is known in the area as Don Nacho.  "Now everybody knows how valuable cocoa is. It's the best business we have," he adds.  Scholars believe cocoa plants first grew in the Amazon basin, possibly in the area that now corresponds to Venezuela, another large cocoa exporter.   Ecuador's native cocoa beans are known as "Nacional" or "Arriba", a name believed to derive from the location of its discovery. Arriba means "up river" and many cocoa plantations were located along the Guayas river, which flows towards the port of Guayaquil, Ecuador's largest city.

 

"Fine" or "flavour" beans, the top-quality varieties used in gourmet products because of their superior taste, account for only 5% of the world's cocoa production, but demand is increasing.

Much like wine, chocolate reflects the flavours of the region where cocoa beans are grown, and how they are dried and fermented. 

Over the last decade, as the demand for more flavourful cocoa has risen, Ecuador has emerged as the pre-eminent exporter of fine beans.

It is a favourite destination for globetrotting chocolatiers in search of the best, and cocoa production has also become a sustainable source of income for Ecuador's farmers.

"Farmers didn't use to pay much attention to cocoa," says Ignacio Estupinan, a 66-year-old farmer who is known in the area as Don Nacho.

"Now everybody knows how valuable cocoa is. It's the best business we have," he adds.

Scholars believe cocoa plants first grew in the Amazon basin, possibly in the area that now corresponds to Venezuela, another large cocoa exporter. 

Ecuador's native cocoa beans are known as "Nacional" or "Arriba", a name believed to derive from the location of its discovery. Arriba means "up river" and many cocoa plantations were located along the Guayas river, which flows towards the port of Guayaquil, Ecuador's largest city.

Is Ecuador home to the world's best chocolate?

In the lush province of Esmeraldas, on Ecuador's northern border with Colombia, farmers are proud to say they produce "black gold".

They are not talking about oil, Ecuador's main export, but cocoa beans.

The smooth, bitter-tasting paste extracted from the beans is the key ingredient in chocolate and one of this Andean country's claims to fame. 

It is also deeply connected to the history of Ecuador, the world's largest exporter of cocoa until the beginning of the 20th Century.

Plant disease and the rise of new cultivations in British and French colonies across Africa and Asia saw Ecuador lose its top spot in the early 1900s. 

Cocoa started losing its appeal to farmers and was replaced by bananas and coffee, which were more lucrative.

West Africa became the world's leader in cocoa production and exports, with a focus on so-called "bulk" or "ordinary" beans, used for processed chocolate-flavoured candies and sweets.