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Abstract

  • Lydgate Farms on Kaua’i provides a singular three-hour tour that educates guests on the method of constructing chocolate and the ethics behind cacao farming.
  • The farm is dedicated to sustainability and regenerative farming practices, with a give attention to caring for the land for future generations.
  • The chocolate produced at Lydgate Farms is thought for its distinctive flavors, because of a various collection of cacao pods and the cautious fermentation course of. Guests can pattern quite a lot of scrumptious sweets through the tour.

When most individuals consider visiting the Hawai’ian island of Kaua’i, they may image lush green landscapes with waterfalls, the mysterious peaks of the NāPali Coast, the mysterious Ship Wreck beach, or the beautiful Poipu Beach.

However there may be an expertise on the Backyard Island that vacationers received’t need to miss – a tour of Lydgate Farms.

Kaua’i Is Recognized For Its Chocolate (And Lydgate Farms)

Lydgate Farms has an extended historical past of cacao farming on Kaua’i


Sign among lush greenery
Picture by Robynne Trueman 

Lydgate Farms signal 

Positioned on the east aspect of the island, Lydgate Farms is a 46-acre chocolate farm that provides a three-hour tour, the primary of its sort, in Kaua’i. We had the pleasure of embarking on this instructional and scrumptious journey just lately, with participating tour information Alexandria Webster.

Having labored at Lydgate Farms for 4 years, Alexandria grabs the eye of vacationers from the second the tour commences, her ardour for sustainability and wholesome dwelling evident in all aspects of the expertise.

The household that owns the farm, the fifth era in Hawai’i, are pioneers of cacao farming on Kaua’i. They stay and function by the ideology of Malama ‘Aina. This terminology means to take care of the land, so it regenerates for generations to come back.

Alexandria shared with us that upholding this intrinsic worth in all elements of its manufacturing is how Lydgate Farms stays sustainable as a small-scale cacao farm.


A trash can, blue recycling bin, paper waste, and food waste bin all in a line
Picture by Robynne Trueman 

Recycling, paper waste, trash, and natural meals waste all has its place at Lydgate Farms

Regenerative farming is clear from the start of the tour the place our pretty information inspired us to be aware when disposing of waste on the property. She proudly confirmed us her composting system and displayed separate disposal bins for meals waste, paper, plastics, and rubbish.

Secure to say, if everybody was as aware of their carbon footprint because the workforce at Lydgate Farms, it could change the world for the higher.

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Lydgate Farms Makes use of A Labor-Intensive Course of To Make Eco-Aware Chocolate

On Kaua’i, chocolate-making takes years


Cacao pods on a tree
Picture by Robynne Trueman 

Cacao fruit grows on a tree within the orchard at Lydgate Farms

All through the three-hour tour, which is akin to a wine-tasting tour however with positive sweets, guests to Lydgate Farms be taught all concerning the course of of constructing chocolate, from tree to bar, and the ethics behind cacao farming worldwide.

Put aside a few of your funds for the present store; this tour will definitely make vacationers need to convey residence a minimum of one bar of chocolate (however in all probability extra)!

As Alexandria defined to us, chocolate is one thing to be savored when consuming due to the effort and time that goes into making it. It takes round 5 years from the time the Theobroma cacao grows, is harvested, undergoes fermentation, and is finally packaged on the market and consumption.

The Theobroma cacao pods develop on timber in numerous groves throughout the property. A lot of the timber on the farm are roughly 10 years outdated, whereas the oldest on the farm are round 20 years outdated.


Yellow cacao pods
Picture by Robynne Trueman 

Cacao fruit that ripens with a yellowish pink hue develop on a tree at Lydgate Farms 

Lydgate Farms is continually planting new timber. Cacao timber can stay and produce properly into their 100s, however the best years for rising fruit are into their 40s and 50s. Pods can seem inexperienced, pink, or yellow when ripe, relying on the pod kind.

As a result of all of them develop in the identical areas, it’s fascinating to be taught that the sweets produced at Lydgate Farms (and all cacao farms) are by no means one particular kind of cacao, however a ravishing medley of these harvested in a single space. Which means every bar of chocolate can have its personal distinctive taste with completely different notes.

Lydgate Farms has been acknowledged 3 times for having the most effective cacao beans on this planet!

The merchandise produced at Lydgate farms vary from chocolate bars to cacao shell tea to honey. As Alexandria informed us, “The essence of a spot is within the taste of its honey.”

The phrase she used to explain this phenomenon is terroir; the phrase means soil or land, however on this occasion, it refers to how the land and soil play a job within the flavors of the merchandise produced in a area.


Seeds inside fruit
Picture by Robynne Trueman 

The inside of a ripe cacao pod

What additionally performs a job within the taste of the chocolate, particularly, is the fermentation course of. Cacao in some components of the world is harvested and packaged for consumption shortly, with out a lot regard for the laborers who harvest it or the land from which it comes.

When this occurs, the fermentation course of is usually skipped, which is when the style of the darkish chocolate turns into extraordinarily bitter.

For individuals who don’t suppose they like darkish chocolate, their minds will probably be ceaselessly modified after sampling the 70% signature property darkish chocolate bars crafted by Lydgate Farms.

Containing natural sugar, natural cocoa butter, and Lydgate Farms’ personal cacao nibs, these darkish sweets are designed to be savored with a myriad of scrumptious flavors arising because the chocolate melts in your mouth.


A small piece of a chocolate in a paper cup
Picture by Robynne Trueman 

Sampling a chunk of chocolate on the tour 

Lydgate Farms’ rigorously ferments its cacao in crates lined with banana leaves to create these delectable nutritious darkish sweets which might be definitely something however bitter. Moreover chocolate bars and tea, they produce the primary and solely 100% Hawai’ian Macadamia nut lined in Hawai’ian chocolate.

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How To Tour Lydgate Farms In Kaua’i

Excursions can be found at Lydgate Farms year-round and final for 3 hours


exterior gift shop lydgate
Picture by Robynne Trueman 

The outside of the present store at Lydgate Farms 

This expertise is out there to vacationers visiting the island of Kaua’i year-round.

  • Tour Length: 3 hours
  • Value per Grownup: $135
  • Value per Youngster (7-12): $95

Arrive at your tour hungry and able to snack. There may be loads of chocolate and native fruit to pattern over the course of three hours!

The excellent tour of the property with tastings is out there 3 times a day (9 am – 12 pm, 10 am to 1 pm, and 11 am to 2 pm) Monday to Friday at Lydgate Farms.

There will probably be a fourth tour added every day within the close to future, so guests can take a look at their website to book in advance.

Alexandria informed us, “We are attempting to rework Hawai’i into the Napa Valley of the chocolate world.”

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It’s an incredible comparability as a result of the kind of chocolate-tasting expertise and schooling a customer has at Lydgate Farms is not like some other they are going to have had previously. It teaches you to understand the artwork of figuring out flavors in chocolate, respecting the land from which it comes, and being thoughtful concerning the elements you place in your physique.

To be taught extra about agricultural experiences and excursions on Kaua’i, go to GoHawaii.com.

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