A Henfield chocolate-making company has won a national award in what has been described as the ‘Oscars’ of the food world.
The Raw Chocolate Company is celebrating the news that its Goji Berry & Orange chocolate bar was awarded the 2 Gold Stars in the Great Taste 2013.
The awards are the food industry’s equivalent to Michelin Stars awarded to restaurants.
Out of almost 10,000 products entered into the annual food awards just 600 have been awarded 2-star.
Linus Gorpe, founder of the Raw Chocolate Company said: “We are honoured and stunned to receive this recognition and award.
“The judge’s comments were amazing.”
Linus founded the company in 2006 to ‘make the very best chocolate’ and said the award is a reflection on his entire range.
He said: “What is more exciting is that we use the same basic recipe and techniques for all our six raw chocolate bars, so the award is also a reflection on our entire range.
“ We’ve got a high standard to maintain now!”
More than 400 Great Taste judges blind tasted the products over 50 days from May to the end of July.
Comments made by the expert panels on the Goji Berry & Orange bar included:
“A well balanced chocolate bar, very rich and bitter.”
“The goji comes through the dark chocolate nicely.”
“Well tempered with a good snap. Gorgeous.”
“Lovely crack when broken, high quality chocolate.”
Great Taste is the largest and most trusted accreditation scheme for speciality and fine food & drink.
The independent accreditation enables small food and drink businesses to compete against supermarket premium own label brands.
Since its establishment in 1994 over 80,000 products have been evaluated.
This year alone, almost 10,000 products were blind-tasted by panels of specialists: top chefs, cookery writers, food critics, restaurateurs and fine food retailers.
Working in small teams, experts taste 25 foods in each sitting, discussing each product.
A coordinating food writer transcribes their comments directly onto the Great Taste website which producers access after judging ends.
Any food that a judging team believes is worthy of Great Taste stars is judged by consensus by at least two further teams.
For Great Taste 3-star, every judge attending the session, which can be as many as 40 experts must unanimously agree the food delivers that indescribable ‘wow’ factor.