Melbourne’s obsession with the perfect cacao bean isn't a new phenomenon. In fact, you'd be hard-pressed to find a more chocoholic city going around. And if you're a fan of the dark stuff, this Sydney Rd newbie is definitely something you should check out. Welcome to Ratio Cocoa Roasters, the new masters of bean to bar chocolate.
The brains behind Ratio, Debbie Makin, spent time abroad studying the cocoa trade and its multifaceted tastes and combinations. The result? Single origin, handcrafted, small batch chocolate with zero preservatives and additives.
“Unfortunately not many people know the true taste of chocolate because everything is so heavily processed. We're here to show chocolate in its authentic and most delicious form”, says Debbie.
Open Thursday through Sunday, these chocolate-lovers put the stuff in your cupboard to shame. The top-shelf range is simple: the dark chocolate is a mixture of cocoa nibs and organic raw cane sugar, and the milk chocolate adds Aussie whole milk powder and organic Peruvian cocoa butter. Once grinded and stored for 72 hours, some form of magic happens and the smooth liquid chocolate is moulded and hand-wrapped, ready for you to eat on the couch while watching Bridget Jones.
Ratio is also baking a range of specialist choc-themed treats (try the brownie with vanilla ice-cream), plus a collection of uber-rich milkshakes. These bad boys come in a few flavours, but the brownie is our personal pick. It's got real brownie chunks blended through, because why the hell not.
One more thing: if you’ve always felt like you belong in Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory, Ratio is offering behind-the-scenes chocolate tours at its Brunswick factory. No golden ticket required.
Image credit: Alex Drewniak