Elevate your daily routine with our ceremonial cacaos
☆ Experience the rare and distinct flavor and texture of our Artisanal Ceremonial Cacao range, meticulously crafted to deliver an unparalleled taste experience that will tantalise your taste buds and leave you feeling deeply satisfied.
☆ Our small-batch cacaos are sourced from the finest beans and expertly blended to create a symphony of rich, velvety flavors that dance across your palate.
☆ Whether you're seeking a moment of indulgence or looking to elevate your daily routine, our cacaos are the perfect choice. So why settle for mass-produced unhealthy drinking beverages when you can indulge in the artistry and craftsmanship of our artisanal cacao?
EL SALVADOR · GUATEMALA · COSTA RICA · MEXICO
How do we do it?
Our rustic and minimally processed Cacao Paste is made using slow, meticulous artisanal methods with extra care and love. We start by hand sorting the raw cacao beans before gently roasting them to create a unique profile for each cacao origin. Next, we "crack" and "winnow" the beans until they become "cacao nibs" (beans without the husk). We then pour the nibs into our small stone mill, which transforms them into a rustic cacao paste.
Our version of "ceremonial cacao" is a tribute to our Mesoamerican roots and admiration of the ancestral practices and uses of the cacao as a "plant medicine". We exclusively choose sustainable and traceable rare cacaos from Mesoamerica, with no added sugar or aromas, and nothing removed. The cacao butter/fat remains in the cacao paste. Our artisanal processes are unique and make our ceremonial cacaos special.
We work directly with specialty cacao beans from our family farm, Finca Cuyancùa, located in El Salvador, as well as other farms in El Salvador such as Finca S.Fernando (Atehuàn), La Carrera (Lenca), Parras Lempa (Tlaloc), and cooperatives across Central America such as Fedecovera - Guatemala (Q'eqchi') and Nahua in Costa Rica (Nahua).
Each of our cocoa's has its own specific flavor profile, ranging from earthy to spicy, fruity to floral.
We are vertically integrated and buy cocoa directly from the farms for Salvadorean cocoas, and from a trusted partner for those cocoas from Guatemala and Costa Rica.
How to prepare the perfect Cocoa Cup?
Once chopped finely, the paste is easy to dissolve in hot water or vegetable "milk", and you can whisk it by hand into a frothy drink or use a blender. You can add from 20 g to 25 g of cocoa.
When chopping the cocoa, you will see the white spots of cocoa butter, which naturally make up around half of the bean's paste, and create the creamy rich texture of the drink.
There are so many ancient recipes, but for sure, the ancient Mesoamerica cacao drink was made using water and not cow milk. Some ancient recipes recall the use of achiote, corn, vanilla, honey and chili.
But if you wish to enhance the cocoa, you can add any botanicals you want, like ashwagandha, mushrooms (Reishi, Chaga, Cordyceps...), maca, ginseng, ginger, cinnamon, cayenne pepper, cardamom, star anise, cloves, rose petals, lavender, natural vanilla or any other spice or herb you like. You can drink it bitter, but some also like to sweeten the drink with honey, dates and also consider to use dried prunes as an alternative to processed sugars.
Our Cacao is the product of a collaboration of intentions
Why is Cacao called 'Ceremonial'?
This is still an open debate. "Ceremonial" for us its a very nice form to differentiate this "rustic pure cacao paste and traditional Mesoamerican beverage", from the iIndustrial cocoa mass/paste, cocoa powder or commercial hot chocolate preparations we usually find in supermarkets, stores and pastry shops, which are mostly unethical, ultra-refined and ultra-processed.
Cacao in its purest form has been re-discovered as a "plant of power", a real "superfood" rich in minerals, fibers, vitamins, antioxidants and neurotransmitters these days.
Native civilizations along Mesoamerica, considered cacao part of the sacred, especially the Ancient Mayas , and have known pretty well the multiple benefits and properties it has, but many traditions and cultures were sadly lost during the Spanish invasion and the subsequent colonial period.
The interesting part with the new ceremonial cacao movement these days, is that people are probably discovering this incredible plant and natural drink, which is very different from commercial treats such as industrial chocolates, appreciating also the bitterness and natural new flavors and textures.
Mexoamerica is a historically and culturally defined geographic area comprising current central and south Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, El Salvador, and border regions of Honduras, western Nicaragua, and northwestern Costa Rica. In this region, for millennia, cocoa was considered sacred and divine. It was consumed as a natural remedy mostly mixed with water and corn, but also was used as a currency. The last Aztec Emperor, Moctezuma II, used to drink 50 cups of cocoa a day.
The entire Yucatán Peninsula together with the Mexican states of Tabasco and Chiapas, the rest of Guatemala and Belize, as well as the border regions of Honduras and El Salvador, were the home to the Maya civilization, one of the most advanced and highly developed societies in ancient Mesoamerica.
1. * Mesoamerica map, Source: UNAM, Mexico
2.* History of Mesoamerican Civilisations
Cocoa and the "bliss" molecule
Mood enhancing substances in cocoa make it particularly suitable for personal creativity and inner work from an holistic perspective. It could also be a change in our life-style. Whole cocoa contain the "bliss" molecule known as Anandamide, an endocannabinoid. It also contains other pleasure-related neurotransmitters such as dopamine, serotonin and phenylethylamine (PEA), along with the gentle stimulant Theobromin. When we put natural cacao in our body, it makes us feel like we are falling in love; relaxed, mindful, euphoric, nourished and energized.
What is a Cacao Ritual / Gathering / Circle?
For over a decade, spiritual and holistic practitioners have been rediscovering the use of cacao. While modern "cacao ceremonies or circles" can vary in their focus, at the heart of these practices is the consumption of cocoa in its purest form. Some people claim that cacao increases creativity and helps to lower tension and stress.
Today, modern cocoa circles or ceremonies aim to rebalance the energies within us and restore good health and harmony. By opening our hearts, cocoa can help us work through past blocks and traumas and address repressed negative energy. Many cocoa circles combine aspects of personal growth and mindfulness with other traditions and practices, such as meditation, prayer, breathwork, song, music, and dance.
In our opinion, you don't have to be a "descendant" of the Mayan or Mexica cultures to guide your own individual or public ritual. You can honor the plant and its sacredness and build your connection with it. However, it's important to avoid any form of cultural appropriation of the modern descendants of indigenous groups of Mesoamerica, such as modern mayas fe
There is no evidence of specific cacao ceremonies in ancient times as they are intended now. Historians and evidence suggest that cacao was certainly a drink that Mesoamericans used to have on special occasions and even in ceremonies, such as corn or harvest ceremonies, funerals, engagements, and rewards for battles. What we are seeing today is a completely new thing, and everybody has their own perspective on making it special.
"Can I use Ceremonial Cacao, without the 'Ceremony'?
Yes! Our intentions is to bring to you new cocoa experiences, flavors, strains, terroirs for a more conscious and pure use of it. Cacao is increasingly used by individuals as part of a healthy an conscious diet, integrated into their daily routine (often in place of coffee) and to support their own personal practices. It can be enjoyed as a warm beverage, or added to smoothies, muesli or other delicious treats.
The "medicinal" and mood-enhancing effects of natural cacao are proven and more and more people consume cacao for their well-being; to aid concentration, calm the nervous-system and boost their energy and creativity.
How we make it
What motivated us to promote cocoa as a Ceremonial Holistic and why is it named in this way?
With the purity of cocoa we want to spread the culinary and cultural traditions of Mesoamerica, bring to light the millenary traditions around this plant considered precious by the Mesoamerican peoples, to bring it back to the attention of people who are looking for unrefined, integral, handcrafted, simple and traceable and that they are not exactly "fine" products or highly processed chocolates.
The precise definition of ceremonial cocoa has not yet been established; it is a pure cocoa paste that recalls the pre-Columbian Mesoamerican drink (not made of chocolate, which contains sugar and undergoes other processing), produced with the intention of being used for purposes of spiritual introspection or as a functional food.
The cocoa used to produce the pasta must be traceable (that is, you must know where and how it was grown precisely, it is not enough just to identify the nation), ethical (that is, it must be well paid on the plantation) and worked with artisanal methods gentle and slow on a small scale, and sustainable, in harmony with the nature and biodiversity of the place where it grows (not large plantations and monocultures where biodiversity is threatened).
Industrial cocoa pastes have not been created with the intention of being used for spiritual introspection purposes or as natural medicine, since large-scale processing requires much more aggressive processes and poor and low quality raw materials, often of dubious origin and with a high human cost. A cocoa's energy is only high when it grows in a healthy, non-toxic environment and when the people who work there feel connected to the plant throughout the process.
The cocoa mass can be produced in the place of origin or elsewhere, as long as there is transparency and traceability and profound values of connection with the territory of origin of the cocoa easily visible to anyone. A true connection with the territory makes ceremonial cacao even more powerful.
As far as we know, for more than a decade movements of people who practice holistic and spiritual disciplines have been discovering the medicinal use of cocoa and re-evaluating its power as a plant.
Bliss chemicals (anandamide, dopamine, serotonin) - Possible answers to the fact that cocoa has positive effects on our mental and physical health.
Il cacao è un alimento che contiene una molecola chiamata anandamide, un endocannabinoide conosciuto per le sue proprietà di benessere. Inoltre, il cacao contiene anche altri importanti neurotrasmettitori, come la dopamina, la feniletilamina, la serotonina e il triptofano, che il nostro cervello utilizza per regolare le emozioni. Il triptofano, presente soprattutto nelle carni e nel pesce, è uno degli aminoacidi essenziali necessari per sintetizzare la serotonina, un neurotrasmettitore che regola l'umore e il sonno. Consumare il cacao puro può essere un'alternativa al caffè del mattino o una componente sana della nostra dieta quotidiana.