El Valle, a rich cacao growing region, owes its name to a municipality in the Hato Mayor Province.
Mountainous and not far from the coastal town of Sabana de la Mar, the gateway by boat to the fabled Samaná Peninsula on the Atlantic coast of the Dominican Republic, it is a place of superlative natural beauty and diverse cacao genetics.
There is great promise for quality cacao in this region, as well as a potential for cacao agro-tourism because of the beauty of its farms and proximity to the coast, the town of Sabana del Mar and the historic Sánchez port from which cacao was traditionally exported on Samaná Peninsula. There is a close relationship and trust between local buyers and farmers in this region.
Parts of El Valle still bear the marks of an epic century old falling out between the great Suchard company and locally entrenched Swiss partners. But today it is home to some of the Dominican Republic’s most promising organic cacao farmers, working with an extraordinarily diverse mixture of old and new genetic material.
Dominated by lychee/rhubarb and complex acidity, with tropical fruits and delicate black tea astringency plus chocolate, milk and grassy hints.
Harvest & Processing
There is a close relationship and trust between local buyers and farmers in this region.
Some of the organic cacao from El Valle purchased for Rizek through its buyer under the supervision of FUPAROCA (Foundation for Social Assistance, Rehabilitation, and Management of Organic Cacao Plantations) is processed at La Elvesia, which depends on traditional cascade fermentation boxes and tunnel cacao dryers.