Bean to Bar by Minimal Chocolate

Minimal Chocolate - Bean to Bar

In a kitchen near Yoyogi park, the Minimal Chocolate team is re-engineering the concept of a chocolate bar. The problem: how to bring the chocolate consuming market closer to the cacao producing nations? The solution: design a bar that entices the consumer to want to know the chocolates’ origin and process.

Minimal Chocolate - Bean to BarMinimal Chocolate - Bean to BarMinimal Chocolate - Bean to Bar

It starts off with a bean in an equator region where the climate allows for such a rich bean to grow. From there the creative and the chef at Minimal import it to a stylish cafe in the Shibuya ward and turn the beans into tasty bars. The concept was born from taking chocolate to its simplest form, the cacao.

Minimal Chocolate - Bean to Bar Minimal Chocolate - Bean to Bar

The Minimal team’s obsession with cacao beans aligns with there vision to connect the consumer market and producer culture closer together. The engineer behind the recipe is Masato Asahi. The team uses all natural ingredients and the flavours of cacao beans from South America, Africa and South East Asia to cook up a bar that can be genuinely recognised as the Japanese chocolate bar.

Minimal Chocolate - Bean to Bar

Minimal’s enthusiasm for cacao has lead them to spread their process and love for the bean through monthly workshops. The workshop leader takes participants through the 7 steps of how the bean becomes the bar.

Minimal Chocolate - Bean to Bar

Step 1: The Crop

The workshop leader gives a detailed explanation on the cultivation of cacao beans.

“Anything is good if it’s made of chocolate.”

― Jo Brand

Step 2: Ferment & Dry

The workshop leader moves on to explain the drying process. Participants are engaged through trivia.

Will looked horrified. “What kind of monster could possibly hate chocolate?”

― Cassandra Clare, Clockwork Angel

Step 3:  Roast

Participants receive their beans right out the oven.

 “There is nothing better than a friend, unless it is a friend with chocolate.”

― Linda Grayson

Step 4: Brake and Winnow

As a group, participants break and winnow the outer skin of the cacao beans.

Minimal Chocolate - Bean to Bar

Step 5: Grind, Mix, and Conch

Participants are given a blender and kitchen tools to grind and mix the beans with natural sugars.

Minimal Chocolate - Bean to Bar

Step 6: Temper and Mold

Participants take turns shaping the chocolate mix into a bar shaped mold.

bMinimal Chocolate - Bean to Bar

Step 7: Age

Normally the ageing process takes about a month, however, do to time the bars are placed in a refrigerator and then soon after given to each participant as a treat for their return home.

Minimal Chocolate - Bean to Bar bean to bar

Bean to bar – food of the gods, designed for mortals.