We were introduced to Susie and Veronica the duo behind Batch as well as a number of friendly Taza employees. Taza produces 100% organic direct trade stone ground Mexican Chocolate. Stone grinding the beans is a traditional method of producing chocolate that involves minimal processing and gives the Taza bars their distinctive rustic texture.
Batch ice cream is produced one batch at a time at Crop Circle Kitchen in Jamaica Plain. The owners pride themselves on locally sourced, organic and fair trade ingredients. The milk and cream come from a dairy farm in Tiverton, Rhode Island, the sea salt and butter are from Maine and the coffee beans are from a company out of Orange, MA. The chocolate and the vanilla beans are sourced direct from farms in Costa Rica.
The ingredients on the applied-by-hand labels are all ones you can pronounce, foregoing any stabilizers that are often found in commercial ice creams. While this makes their product at little more expensive (cartons retail for about $7) it also allows for a superior taste, an incomparable freshness, a spoonful of the purest, creamiest, most luxurious quality ice cream you can ever recall tasting.Today we sampled the vanilla and coffee. (Note on the cartons the cute little icons to designate the flavor!) The vanilla is made with seeds from the beans split open by hand, never with vanilla extract. Vanilla gets a plane-jane wrap but this stuff is so fresh and creamy you will want to eat it plain! The coffee carton boasting a tiny coffee cup as its logo is made from freshly ground beans providing a taste that is a flawless balance somewhere in between bitter and sweet. The toppings provided by Taza ranged from just made chocolate sauce, to roasted cacao nibs to chocolate covered cacao nibs. All were a welcome addition to the made-from-scratch ice cream.Gotta love the Taza bike cart!
The marriage of these two relatively new products proved quite a treat. Taza was founded in 2006 and Batch is coming up on its one year anniversary - founded in May 2010.
Offering high quality ingredients manufactured in a sustainable, socially responsible way results in a superior tasting product and one you feel good about eating. I was happy to have the opportunity to learn more about them both as well as check out the Taza factory store!
Above: Hand chiseled authentic Mexican stones used for grinding the chocolate. Below: looks to be some larger stone grinding machinery.
While inside I sampled three new Taza flavors - Orange, Ginger and Chipoltle Chili.
The flavors really shine through in their chocolate disks. Have your chocolate any way you like, sweet, potent or spicy.
Back outside: The event had quite a turnout!
Special thanks to Carol for providing us each with a bag of treats to take home including pints of salted caramel and coffee ice cream, a batch tee shirt, a Taza 80% dark chocolate bar and a can of chocolate covered cacao nibs.