In 2007, David Mason opened up his chocolate factory in Black Mountain. He was one of the first of seven chocolate artisans in the U.S. and the original chocolate producer in North Carolina. Making chocolate from the cocoa bean in small batches sets Black Mountain Chocolate apart from the large industrial chocolate makers. They have an artisanal approach that is very much in keeping with the Appalachian heritage of the region.
Known for exceptional chocolate they take to heart the use of local ingredients now offering chocolate made from local goat milk. A chocolate bar with 53% cacao but with, as BMC proclaims, “… just enough twang to play off the sweetness of the chocolate.” The Mountain Dark Milk Chocolate bar ($4.99 for a 2.5 oz. bar) is available from their website as well as in retail stores.
|Mountain Dark Milk Chocolate|
I enjoyed the rich dark flavors of earthy burnt sugar and subtle butterscotch as well as red berries that retained a refined sweetness combined with the earthy notes from the goat milk. My wife wasn’t a fan of the goat milk’s earthiness but she isn’t a fan of goat milk in the first place.
|Single-Origin Dark Chocolate - Dominican|
The Single-Origin Dark Chocolate bar ($4.99 for a 2.25 oz. bar) made from 70% Dominican Republic Hispaniola cacao was a big winner for both of us though. Its rich dark character shows a creaminess not often found with 70% chocolate along with nuttiness and restrained blue fruits with a very slight bitterness on the finish. It has a very balanced profile.
|Comparison of the two chocolate bars|
Black Mountain Chocolate is making some beautiful chocolate in our ‘back yard’. They’re interjecting some of the Southern traditions that make the South … the South. This makes them part of our landscape in more than just location. BMC promises a ‘Factory’ for us to visit this year, so perhaps tours of the chocolate factory are not far away.
It makes me proud to see so many unbelievable artisans in our area creating world-class noms for us to acquire for our benefit!
Black Mountain Chocolate
How about some wine pairings to go with this chocolate?
Mountain Dark Milk Chocolate pairings - The rich earthy character of the chocolate and the following wines will make a wonderful combination.
Single-Origin Dark Chocolate pairings - the creamy dark character with notes of nuts and blue fruits will be delicious along side these wines.