SKU: 6001|other products by Essential Pantry
  • Cru Sauvage - Wild Cocoa Baking Chocolate 68% (Bittersweet)
$39.99 $37.95
Discounts Available
  • buy 6 to 11, save 7.5%

Addtional Info

Size 1 pound
Source Bolivia


Cru Sauvage - Wild Cocoa Baking Chocolate Discs 68% - Bittersweet

1 pound - Bolivia

These little discs of rare Cru Sauvage bittersweet baking chocolate are excellent for eating out of hand or for incorporating into a host of chocolate desserts.

If I could only have one chocolate for the rest of my life, on a desert island, on a trip anywhere, or just camping, this is the chocolate I would choose.

The substantial and harmonious cocoa flavors of the Cru Sauvage bittersweet baking chocolate discs are complemented by the freshness of lemon and the fruitiness of grapefruit.

The traditional gentle processing method (60 hours conching) unfolds the intense dried prune bouquet and vanilla in a most exquisite way. The exceptionally pleasant fruit acidity and the long-lasting ending make the Cru Sauvage, with its cocoa content of 68%, a unique culinary experience.

The Story of Cru Sauvage - A Bitter Sweet Journey from Bean to Bar

Wild cocoa trees grow in the Amazon region of Bolivia on raised areas of land, which stick out like small islands in the middle of swampland. The Cambas, as locals of this region are known, have lived for centuries in this underdeveloped and hard-to-reach part of Bolivia. From years of experience, they know exactly where to find the wild cacao trees, and during the harvest, they gather the cacao fruit which grows in scattered locations throughout the forest. The Cambas are often away for days, either on foot, on horseback or in dugout canoes, in pursuit of the wild bean.

Back on the farm, or finca, called "Tranquilidad," the cocoa beans are allowed to ferment in wooden crates. Regular turning provides consistent aeration. Finally, the beans are dried in the tropical sun for several days. Then, the beans are ready for their long journey to Europe.

Transportation of the wild beans is a real challenge. Cocoa pods are harvested during the rainy season and roads are largely impassable during that time. So, the bags filled with beans are carried on riverboats to the Amazon steamer docks in Trinidad 

Then the beans will travel 900 miles by truck over Bolivia's antiquated road system to La Paz, Bolivia's capital city, where they will be stored briefly in a high-altitude (13,000 feet) warehouse. The local weather and elevation provide the perfect storing conditions for the dried, raw beans.

From there, the beans will soon travel over the high pass (15,700 feet) across the Andes mountains to Chile's Pacific coast port of Arica, where the precious cargo is loaded onto a feeder cargo ship. From there, the wild cocoa beans are shipped to Panama, then through the Panama canal and across the Atlantic to Europe where, upon arrival in Rotterdam they are reloaded onto smaller feeder boats for the relatively short trip to Basel, Switzerland.

Once they arrive in Basel, they are painstakingly inspected once more by the receiver - the famed Felchlin Chocolate Company.

These unusually small cocoa beans require extra special attention and care during the manufacturing process. All the machines used to process cocoa baking chocolate must be readjusted individually to fit the demands of the Cru Sauvage; the roasting process especially requires intensive care and patience. For Bolivian wild cocoa, the roasting temperature is lower and the roasting time is longer than for all other cocoa beans.

Then comes conching. Conching is a time-intensive blending and refinement process requiring a great deal of know-how, patience, and dedication - as well as a certain amount of intuition, and a natural sense of what the Cru Sauvage bittersweet baking chocolate needs.

Each type of cocoa is different - and so is its conching time. For the Cru Sauvage cocoa baking chocolate, 60 hours in the traditional conches have been determined as optimum length of time. This extra-long-lasting conching process and aeration allow the still hidden wealth of its aromas and flavors to unfold.

At the same time, homogeneity, flavor, subtleness and ideal texture are reached, leading to a unique flavor-profile and exceptionally high quality mouth-feel.

Through such great care in picking and processing, the small wild beans gradually reveal their intense and unique aromas and flavors. Cru Sauvage bittersweet baking chocolate is truly the only one of its kind - and relatively inexpensive, considering its long voyage from wild bean to exquisite couverture chocolate!

To learn more about Volker Lehmann, and his journey to preserve the Bolivian Wild Cocoa Bean, Cru Sauvage, and the rain forest, click here.


The rare and unique wild ‘Beniano Silvestre‘ cacao comes from Beni Department in the lowlands of Bolivia. The collectors, mostly indigenous Chimans, seek out the widely scattered ‘cacao islands’, cut the ripe fruit from the trees and bring it to the collection point by horse or dugout canoe. They are carefully fermented there and then dried in the sun. For the rest of the year, they simply leave the trees in the hands of nature. They are neither fertilised nor pruned. Our local business partner is responsible for quality control, purchasing, drying and organising transport.

Peak harvest season: December to April

BOLIVIA 68% – 60 HR
The rich, harmonious cacao flavour is complemented by the freshness of lemon and the fruitiness of grapefruit. The traditional process teases out the exquisite bouquet of prunes and vanilla. The pleasantly fruity acidity and the lingering finish make this Grand Cru couverture an unforgettable experience.

Ingredients: cacao kernel, sugar, cacao butter
May contain traces of milk, almonds, hazelnuts

The serving size is 100 gr, with 42.4 g total fat, 25.7 g sat fat, 1 mg cholesterol, 6 mg sodium, 46.3 g carb, 10.5 g diet fiber, 30.7 g total sugars, and 6.7 g protein.

Keywords: Cru Sauvage, Cru Savage, wild, cocoa, Volker Lehmann, Bolivia, chocolate, bittersweet, Outside Magazine, rain forest


Average Rating:
(based on 6 reviews)
Delightful, Complex, Satisfying
I like to have a bit of chocolate after lunch every day--for health reasons, of course--so I thought I'd splurge on Cru Savage. I was blown away by the complexity of this chocolate. I let it melt slowly in my mouth to enjoy the symphony of flavors. Just a few disks are very satisfying. I immediately ordered several more bags to last through the hot months. I haven't tried baking with it yet--but for snacking it is exquisite.
by Donna
Best ever dark chocolate
I am a self described choc-aholic and tasting expert of dark chocolate. This truly is the best I've had and the bite size pieces are perfect for my morning, afternoon, and evening "fixes".
by Carrie
Love it!
This chocolate has replaced my old favorite! I use it for snacking and one or two pieces do the trick. I’m going to use it in my fudge this year. Quite excited!
by Tania
Delicious, complex, and fruity
This is some of the best dark chocolate I’ve had and it’s worth every penny. It must be savored. I’ve used it to make Chocolate Crèmeux so far but I’ve snacked on too much of it so I just pre-ordered more!
by Tanya
Love this chocolate!
I bought this chocolate based on another review and it didn’t disappoint. I use it mainly as a treat. But I have baked with it too. However, I enjoy it so much I don’t like to share. It’s a wonderful dark rich chocolate. Try it!
by Tania
Great for chocolate chip cookies.
I use this chocolate to make cookies and they are the best tasting I’ve ever made. Expensive, but can’t beat the flavor.
by K