Criollo is the ‘chocolate tree’ of the Mayas, and was subsequently imported into Europe by the Spanish. This plant produced the finest cocoa, of a delicate flavour, very aromatic and only very slightly bitter. It can be found, above all, in the plant’s countries of origin, in Central and South America, in particular in Venezuela, Mexico, Nicaragua, Guatemala and Colombia, as well as on the islands of rinidad, Granada and Jamaica.
Trinitario cocoa is the result of a cross between Criollo and Forastero. Its story begins off the coasts of Venezuela, in Trinidad, the land that gave it its name. Trinitario is considered a fine cocoa, with a high fat content. It is mainly harvested in Central and South America.
Forastero (meaning ‘stranger’ or ‘outsider’ in Spanish) cocoa, originates from the Upper Amazon, and became the African cocoa par excellence. It is also cultivated in Brazil, in the Antilles, in Central America, and, ever more frequently, in Latin America. It is significantly more resistant than the Criollo cocoa, it also grows more quickly, and produces a greater number of fruits (approximately 80% of world roduction). This plant is the most ordinary variety of cocoa, the most robust, of a bitter flavour and with acidulous aromas that are often used in mixes. There is, however, one xception: the Amenolado variety of the Forastero cocoa, from which the delicate ‘Nacional’ or ‘Arriba’ cocoa is obtained. This is an aromatic variety, cultivated in Ecuador, nd is considered a fine cocoa.