Midlands based maker aims to challenge the way consumers consider modern chocolate
A new Lichfield-based chocolate maker Wnder is releasing two bars from its inaugural collection.
The first expression, Vineyard is from Nicaragua. Its notes of Fig, Dates and Citrus Blossom are reminiscent of holidaying in the South of France. The second expression, Campfire is from Papua New Guinea and enjoys notes of Smoke, Cinnamon and Toffee. Capturing the subtle smoke aroma used to dry the beans, it sparks memories of “laughter around a campfire”.
Wnder Founder Luke Pearson is on a mission to define modern chocolate. Extending a career in food and drink, his CV includes 5 star hotels and R & D at the non-alcoholic spirit brand, Seedlip.
Pearson discovered a 200-year-old Saddle Room near his hometown of Lichfield and knew it was the place he wanted to build a chocolate company.
Wnder is inspired by local hero Erasmus Darwin as an historical mentor challenging the status quo. Pearson explains, “Darwin was a successful physician along with being a superb poet, botanist and leading social figure. He was part of a revolution now known as the “The Age of Wonder”, the first time groups of scientists applied their technical skills to the arts; think hot air balloons and botanical discoveries. Wnder applies this philosophy to create category leading bean to bar chocolate with a fusion of art and science.”
Darwin is also recognised as helping to put the first anti-slavery law to the British Government: child labour, slavery and environmental damage are still found within the chocolate industry despite multiple attempts by big companies over the last 20 years to combat the problem. Wnder chocolate is made from well-sourced and ethically produced cacao, with all Cocoa farmers being paid a fair wage.
Pearson will be raising awareness on these topics at a series of workshops hosted at the Wnder Chocolate tasting room as well as with local Michelin Star restaurant Hampton Manor.
Pearson said, “Wnder Chocolate is a real labour of love; we’re passionate about redefining modern chocolate and committed to delivering a socially conscious brand in the category. The bars have been designed to offer a taste of adventure and a sense of escape from the day to day, we’re really proud to reveal our inaugural collection.”
Wnder is priced at £6.95 for a 65g bar and is available from their website.