Love for chocolate dates back thousands of years.
Some of the earliest records of chocolate consumption can be traced to classic Maya civilization in the 1st millennium AD.
Archeological digs have unearthed Mayan dignitaries buried alongside jars and bowls for chocolate. An 8th century painted vase depicts hot chocolate being held up high and poured into a bowl -- an ancient method of making froth.
Love for chocolate was profound and quickly found its way from pre-Columbian America to the courts and castles of Europe.
Today, millions of tonnes of chocolate are consumed every year around the world.
While everyone loves chocolate, some people take it a bit more seriously than others. Somage Fine Foods take chocolate seriously so that you can just have fun with it.
Based in Melbourne, Somage Fine Foods was borne out of passion and appreciation for quality produce. They sell a range of products including the gorgeous Kali drinking chocolate which is gluten and dairy-free.
I drink mine garnished with couverture sprinkles (pictured below) which makes it all the more luscious. Chocolate couverture is simply chocolate with high cocoa butter content. It pretty much melts as soon as you sprinkle it on and adds a rich texture to the smooth hot chocolate.
The best way to enjoy Kali drinking chocolate is by heating it in a pot on the stove with milk. The milk should be gently heated until just before it starts to steam thus allowing the dairy solids and cocoa to emulsify properly.
For something with a little more kick, try the Kali chocolate coated coffee beans created with premium quality artisan roasted coffee and the finest grade couverture chocolate. But don't stop there.
Somage Fine Foods produces a collection of organic, single-estate teas and tisane (herbal infusions) known as the Chamellia range which are ethically sourced from a lush and high altitude tea-growing region in Sri Lanka.
I was lucky enough to sample several Chamellia teas which come in little silk pyramid infusers or in loose-leaf. The tea I sampled was nine weeks old -- a rare privilege in the big business of tea. You're lucky if supermarket tea bags are less than a year old. The flavours of this fresh, young tea were clean, complex and refined.
Tea, like coffee, is sensitive to its environment. To get the best of the carefully grown and hand-picked leaves, you need to treat it like a living thing. Don't use scalding hot water (80 to 90 degrees is optimal) and allow it to steep in a pot for at least 4 minutes. Store in an air-tight container in a cool, dark place; away from strong scents.
Somage Fine Foods
Tel: 1300 766 243