Stephen and the Chocolate Factory

This weekend I spent the weekend at a chocolate factory. Rather a famous one, as its been on the TV a few times.

Willies Chocolate Factory 2

Willie Harcourt-Cooze owns both a cocoa farm and a chocolate business based in Devon. Willie has a passion for chocolate. He was followed a few months ago filming a program getting the business of the ground, truly taking seed to bar to a new level. There was also a follow up seris where he decided to take a 70% bar to market.

Willies Chocolate Factory 19

I am a huge fan of the program and the product, so when a friend (Aramndo a guy who brings in the Cafe Ita we sell)said he knew this guy called Willie who likes the cafe ita, I said I wanted to meet him big time.

He then went to tell me Willie wanted to try roasting coffee in his cocoa roaster, but I insisted I must help :)

Willies Chocolate Factory 11

Willies Chocolate Factory 16

It so happened when we arrived Willie JUST took delivery of his latest container from Venezuela with some from his farm too in there.

Willies Chocolate Factory 3

Working like dogs we got the container unloaded. We then got to meet all Willies family from the TV who were as lovely as they appeared on the box.

Treated to some amazing food at a country pub it was back to the factory to brew as many brewing methods as we could.

Willies Chocolate Factory 5

We had vac pot, french press, eva solo, ibrik, chemex, and a presso.

More photos at the link here

Willie then kindly agreed to do an in my mug with us below. It was a great laugh much fun had by all.

Episode 36 on Monday the 20th of July 2009 Brazil Cafe Ita with special guests from Stephen Leighton

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What you have been saying

  1. David Walsh says:

    So – how was the coffee that was roasted in the cocoa roaster?

  2. It tasted good. It was a little hard to control so maybe a little darker than I’d normally like to take it, also it was impossible to do any kind of profileing. But brazils forgive a multitude of sins in general.

    It was the one we tasted on the video and although very fresh you could tell the basics of a great cup were there.

    Good times

  3. sarah leighton says:

    The best In my Mug so far i think it was really interesting and was brilliant to watch three passionate people in action.

    Long may it continue :)

  4. CakeBoy says:

    My favourite coffee person on the same screen as my favourite chocolate person …… love it :D

  5. simonp says:

    I remember thinking of you when I saw the first TV series and the similarity in passion (even if Willie is more nuts!!) and theought the 2 of you should meet.
    So, when si the TV series Steve?

  6. I wish Simon I wish :)

  7. simonp says:

    So, the lowdown, is he really as mad as he appears on TV?

  8. Ohhh boy yes mad as a box of frogs… the two of us :)

  9. Paul Franssen says:

    For some odd reason probably having to do with vinyl records, I have a marked tendency to associate “mad” with “Englishmen”.
    For much more pronounced reasons, this same term “mad” is translated in a very different manner when applied, for instance, to French winemakers who, through some form of alliteration might be frequently qualified as “brilliant”.
    As I haven’t been able to taste this particular chocolate from England (I have had opportunity of tasting other ones, oh yes and alas!) I shall prudently refrain from comments other than to express the wish that this gentleman, mad as he may be termed by his compatriots, might have such gallic or other qualities as to make brilliant chocolate.
    With sincere greetings from Belgium.
    Paul
    P.S. And, after all, I buy my coffee in England!

  10. Orla says:

    First time browsing through the site, it was great to see you and Willie talking. I had just made my first order with you but for about half a day before that I was trying to decide if I should get your coffee or willies chocolate. I went for the coffee. I’m going to get the chocolate in a few weeks.

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