In Costa Rica, there is a saying: “Pataste for the people, Cacao for the Gods.” This simple phrase shares the revered status that cacao, the seed from which cocoa and chocolate are made, holds in this country and culture. In the rolling foothills of Pérez Zeledón, Marvin’s Finca (or farm in English) sits on 50 acres of land. Marvin, a local farmer who has received a grant from the government based on his work with cacao, provides the majority of cacao and fresh pepper to the hacienda - as well as the pataste that we share with guests upon arrival. Typically cacao trees grow within 10 degrees of the equator, thriving in fairly uniform temperatures, high humidity, abundant rainfall and nitrogen-rich soil. Therefore, the tropical climate and rainforests of Costa Rica provide the ideal environment - and cacao trees prosper here. Our experience at Marvin’s introduces you to the man behind the mission for a personal tour through his property. Not only home to cacao trees, Marvin’s finca hosts coffee trees, peppercorn plants, sugarcane, pataste (a white cacao) and a winding network of trails through forest and along streams. Walk down these scenic paths into the forest and back through the cacao orchards, seeing first hand how pepper grows and trying pataste straight from the tree. Stop in his processing and fermentation facility to learn about the process of changing cacao to chocolate and taste-test some of Marvin’s own creations. This experience will bring you closer to nature, to ingredients and to the culture and people of Costa Rica. Proceeds are donated to Marvin to support the growth of his business and production facility.
- Duration: 4 to 4.5 hours
- Proceeds for this experience are donated to Marvin to support the growth of his business and production facility
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