In 2007 the province of Salcedo was officially renamed Hermanas Mirabal in honor of the three Mirabal sisters, who heroically defied the dictator Rafael Leonidas Trujillo and were assassinated by Trujillo’s minions in 1960. To this day, neighboring cacao farmers treasure a special link with the Mirabal family, who also grew cacao.
The farmers’ commitment to biodiversity through the organic farming program developed by the Rizek Group’s FUPAROCA preserves one side of the Mirabal sisters’ legacy: respect for all forms of life.Intercropping is a way of life for Dominican cacao farmers. And this iconic citrus, among other tree crops first brought by Spanish settlers to Hispaniola in the 16th century, became a familiar feature on most cacao farms and an indispensable seasoning in Dominican cooking. Héctor José Rizek Llabaly, the family patriarch, is known for his fondness for bitter oranges, and that’s the one citrus that visitors can’t miss in any of the Rizek farms.
Chocolatey citrus with walnuts and wood, grassy undertones and hints of strawberry, almond and geranium.
Innovation and processing
Mirabal shares a common genetic dowry with the neighboring Duarte province. But even minute geographic differences, for example a bit less rain and more limestone, as well as coarse- grained calcareous conglomerates in the soil, might have a bearing on flavor.
A greener, rhubarb-like acidity, with grassy notes enhanced by a shorter fermentation protocol, comes through at Rizek’s CETICO plant in San Francisco de Macorís.