“Look after the roots of the tree, and the fragrant flower and luscious fruits will grow by themselves. Look after the health of the body, and the fragrance of the mind and richness of the spirit will follow." -B.K.S. Iyengar
I had quite the foodie experience on Thursday. We were visiting Manhattan and decided to take a stop over in Brooklyn to grab a bite to eat and do some vintage clothing shopping. But what I really was looking forward to seeing in Brooklyn was the incredible chocolate boutique, Mast Brothers Chocolate. I'd seen their chocolates before at a local coffee shop in my hometown, but I was super excited to go to the place where the chocolate is made on a daily basis. The experience was perhaps my favorite part of the day. I got to see chocolate being hand wrapped in beautifully designed paper, whole cacao beans being poured from giant burlap sacks, and read the descriptions of the various types of chocolate that was for sale. But best of all, I got to taste the marvelously crafted chocolate and discover the flavor differences between chocolate made from beans from all over the world. It was truly amazing.
The video above is a glimpse at the super cool brothers who started the business and the chocolate factory in Brooklyn. And definitely check out this video on their website. It's really awesome.
What I love about Mast Brothers chocolate is that they buy directly from small organic cacao farmers in different parts of the world for a fair price. They then craft the cacao into beautiful bars in small quantities, paying meticulous attention to every detail. The paper that the bars are hand wrapped in is designed by local artists. The boutique itself is beautifully and simply designed (just check out their website to see some pictures). To them, chocolate making is an art, and this is shown in every way possible.
The chocolate isn't exactly cheap at seven dollars a bar, but we couldn't help ourselves and I felt good about my purchase, knowing that this hand crafted chocolate was procured and created in the most sustainable way possible. And it is so amazingly delicious. We had a hard time deciding which bars we wanted to buy. We settled on the crown maple bar, which was 73% cacao and sweetened with maple sugar from maple trees in the Hudson Valley (where I'm from). The other two bars were exotic chocolate from Madagascar (72% cacao) and Peru (75% cacao). I had tasted these at the boutique (along with many others) and fell in love with their complex flavors. I know the next time I'm in the Brooklyn neighborhood, I will stop in and buy a few more.
For more fabulous food and photos from Nourish The Roots,