What to Bring Along

  • Comfortable tennis
  • Comfortable Clothing
  • Water
  • Bug spray
  • Camera
  • Intensity: Easy
  • Duration: 3 Hours

Did you know that some of the best chocolate in the world originates in Belize? The ancient Maya invented chocolate. The raw chocolate bean is called cacao and we grow it right here, mainly in the south part of Belize, the Toledo District. It is not really a bean at all but the seed of a tree that is also call a cacao tree. It grows in a pod, which is a fruit with the seeds inside. Belize has a long history of cacao production.

Some experts say Belize is the “Cradle of Chocolate”, meaning it was first used here. Maya kings consumed large amounts of chocolate as did the average Maya citizen thousands of years ago. The first tax on chocolate was probably here in Belize before Christ was born.

A Maya chocolate pot has been found that is over 2600 years old. A chocolate pot is a ceramic teapot that was used to make a chocolate drink. Fourteen of these pots were found in Belize in 1981. Some of them still had traces of chocolate.

Evidence suggests that the Mayan had chocolate at every meal, breakfast, lunch and dinner. Mixed with ground corn, honey, and hot chili this drink was poured from a standing position into a vessel on the ground. The long pour created a foam head that was prized as the best part of the drink. Regular chocolate drinking is very healthful habit, much better for you than tea or coffee.

Many Maya farm families still use the chocolate drink as a normal part of their diet. Probably farmers were growing and using cacao in this area even before the Maya empire began.

Bean to Bar Chocolate Class offers visitors a very unique opportunity to understand and participate in the entire process of transforming high quality organic cacao into chocolate. You will visit our Cocoa farms and experience two hours of hands-on, artisan chocolate making. Each class includes a tour of the farm focusing on cacao and spices, a brief history of chocolate, an introduction to truffles and confections, as well as tempering chocolate and perfect pairings.