My dear friend Sonia is preparing to be a bride in April! She has been putting together goodie bags, with local products, for guests that are coming in from out of town. When she told me she wanted order Kyya Chocolate bars for everyone, my response was "AWESOME, let's see if we can do a tour!"
Since Kyya Chocolate is a new vendor at the 2015 Bentonville Farmers Market, I had been meaning to get out to their place and check everything out, this granted me the perfect opportunity.
One reason that I fell for Kyya Chocolate is that they produce bean to bar chocolate. They build relationships with farmers across the globe to source cacao beans. Not only does Kyya Chocolate pay the farmers above fair trade prices but they work with the farmers to increase better yields and higher quality cacao.
The first thing that I noticed when I opened the door to Kyya was the smell; the delicious and tempting smell of chocolate. The second thing that I noticed was the bags of cacao beans. Ben, one of the owners, explained that in America we saw cocoa but in the rest of the world they say cacao, pronounced (ka-kow).
Ben explained that at Kyya, they hand grind the beans. They also have a cocoa press so they can manufacture cocoa butter and cocoa powder. Sonia and I got to taste the cocoa powder and let me say, I can't wait until it is available for purchase. I thought I made some pretty delicious hot chocolate but their cocoa powder isn't even in the same league as my hot chocolate mix.
At Kyya, they hand mold each bar. Ben explained to us that the chocolate they produce is made out of the same three ingredients but the bars taste differently depending on where the cacao bean was sourced.
After touring the facility, we were ready to taste some chocolate! Since Sonia wanted the Midnight Chocolate, we tasted five different types of Midnight chocolate. Each of the bars had a distinct flavor profile, we tasted a fruity bar with hints of plum, an earthy bar, a bar that was more traditional and several others. The hardest part of the day was deciding what bars Sonia wanted to purchase, she ended up with four different kinds.
If I had to speculate, I would guess that chocolate is going to be where
coffee and beer are now. I have seen the quality and craftsmanship that
goes into these bars and I am completely sold. I also see how Kyya is
becoming a member of the community and vested in their customers and
Additionally, 10% of their net profits go to orphan care initiatives around the world. Between the Kyya team, they have 6 adopted children and they believe that they need to be a part of orphan care.
If you haven't experienced the various rich flavors of a Kyya Chocolate bar, I encourage you to pick one up, your taste buds will forever be changed! They are also hosting an Open House on, Saturday, February 21st from 10:00am to 3:00pm. The event is free and not much is better then free chocolate. Find out more details at their Facebook event page.