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On small plantations, in secluded coastal valleys, the grassy plains and the foothills of the Andes, generations
of Venezuelan farmers have developed the art of nurturing the finest varieties of criollo and trinitario cacao.

For centuries experts have agreed on one basic truth: Venezuelan cacao is the most flavorful and aromatic
in the world. And El Rey uses only 100% Venezuelan cacao, fermented and sun dried, and processed using
state-of-the-art technology. From this marriage of art and science are born unique chocolate couvertures that
redefine world standards of excellence.

An exceptional chocolate starts with the land, but it takes the art and science of man and a long journey from
plantation to glistening factory to turn a humble heap of cacao beans into a luscious chocolate bar.

Chocolate is made from the beans of a beautiful tropical plant with a suggestive name, Theobroma cacao - The
Food of the Gods. Cacao grows in humid, warm forests around the world sheltered by a canopy of taller trees.

A mature tree will bear between twenty to forty pods a year. Each pod contains from twenty to forty almond
shaped beans enveloped by a mucilaginous ivory tinged substance with a delicious tart flavor. Depending on the
variety, a cacao tree will produce between one to three kilos of dried beans per year.

The Spanish conquistadors were fascinated by the hearty chocolate beverages they found in the lands of the
Maya and the Aztecs. Their detailed accounts contributed to association of cacao with Mexico. Yet the
birthplace of cacao is South America.

En Venezuela hay 3 principales variedades de Cacao


Born in the island of Trinidad from the crossing between Forastero and criollo cacao.

A Fine Cacao.

Since the eighteenth century, trinitarios grow in Eastern Venezuela and sell at a premium at the world cacao


Sur del Lago de Maracaibo y en el pie de la montaña de los Andes.

El Rey del Cacao, El Criollo, es considerado poseedor del sabor y el aroma más finos. En tiempos Pre-
Colombinos, viajó desde Norte América hasta América Central y El Caribe. Los españoles, quiénes reconocían un
buen cacao con tan solo mirarlo, lo llevaron alrededor de todo el mundo, hasta para Asia. Hoy en día, el Criollo
está en peligro de extinción y de ser reemplazado por el forastero, que cuenta con muchas cosechas y es
resistente a enfermedades. Usualmente, las vainas de Criollo son sumamente surcadas, verrugosas y con un final
puntiagudo. Cuando las semillas de Criollo se abren, se encuentran cotiledones que van desde blanco puro, hasta
matices de rosado. Cuando está bien fermentado, los granos de Criollo se secan hasta tener un color bronceado
y exudan distintos aromas del chocolate. Los conocedores de chocolate, aprecian altamente los Criollos
venezolanos, por su falta de amargura y astringencia, y por su sabor a chocolate puro y duradero

FORASTERO (Básico que generalmente se mezcla con el criollo o trinitario, no es utilizado por chocolates
el Rey)

Oeste y Centro de Amazonas .

El Cacao Forastero es un fuerte cacao de Amazonas resistente a las enfermedades. Cuando se abre, los
cotiledones tienen un intenso color morado. Este pigmento se lo da sustancias que imparten sabores ácidos,
amargos y astringentes a las semillas del cacao Forastero.

Hoy en día, el Forastero es el cacao por escogencia en grandes plantaciones comerciales en África, Asia y Brazil.


For centuries, chocolatiers have blended cacao beans from various parts of the world to make chocolates that
respond to a particular flavor and aroma profile. The process is similar to other creative endeavors such as
perfume blending, wine making, and even painting. Bulk or "basic" forastero cacao is treated as a blank canvas
upon which single notes of flavor and aroma coming from beans of various prices and qualities are applied to
create the desired effect.

The best European chocolate manufacturers select flavor grade beans like the magnificent Venezuelan criollos
and trinitarios to mix with less flavorful "basic" forastero beans from Brazil, Africa or Asia. Due to their
limited availability and premium prices, the flavor grade beans from Venezuela are used in small percentages.

El Rey: A New Frontier While blending is a time honored tradition, exploring the use of a single type of cacao
is the new frontier in chocolate making. Having access to regional varieties of Venezuelan cacao of exceptional
quality and flavor complexity, El Rey chooses not to blend. El Rey prefers to let the land do the talking and to
allow the intrinsic qualities of select Venezuelan cacao to take center stage in its unique premium chocolate


Premium chocolates are no longer about "where" they are made but
rather, "what" they are made with.


Our chocolates are Venezuelan Single Bean Origin. Like a fine wine
made from carefully selected grapes or a gourmet olive oil made from
the finest olives, our chocolates are produced using the world's most
flavorful and aromatic regional types of criollo and trinitario cacao
beans, such as the famed Carenero and Rio Caribe beans.

El Rey uses only 100% Venezuelan cacao. Rare, prized, coveted

are these cacao beans


El Rey’s couvertures are manufactured with the famed Carenero bean,

a regional type of cacao that grows east of Caracas. Since the colonial
period, the Carenero has been renowned for its complex flavor notes of
fruit, flower, nut, and spice, and intense chocolate taste. The Carenero
line is composed of five all-purpose presentations flavored with natural
vanilla, and is complemented by our white chocolate made only with
pure cacao butter:

Apamate Dark Chocolate 73.5%

Gran Saman Dark Chocolate 70%

Mijao Dark Chocolate 61%

Bucare Dark Chocolate 58.5%

Caoba Milk Chocolate 41%

ICOA White Chocolate


We at Chocolates El Rey take personal pride in this assertion because since our founding in 1929 we have
utilized only this premium grade, locally grown raw material in the formulation of all our products. And we make,
quite simply, the best chocolate in Venezuela. Today , as our products cross new borders and serve new
consumers, we are confident that these will indeed establish a new and exciting dimension of excellence in a
market with well-defined standards in which novelties are few and far between.

We’re a family business, one of the oldest chocolate manufacturers in Venezuela – in fact, one of the oldest
industrial concerns in the country and we have built our reputation on basic principles of uncompromising
quality, team effort, constant technological innovation and by earning the satisfaction of our customers.

All of us at Chocolates El Rey family take great pleasure in introducing you to the very delicate but intrinsic
balance of flavor and aroma, as well as the subtle, lingering delight of El Rey chocolate – The King of chocolate
made with the King of cacao.
1929 The Tuozzo Zozaya and Company concern is founded in Caracas by José Rafael Zozaya y Carmelo Tuozzo.
It is actually the second chocolate company established in Venezuela. In a short period of time, they managed
to produce the finest chocolate in the country. So they proudly named it EL REY (The King).

1973 The Zozaya family and the Redmond family become partners. The company changes from a family
enterprise to a stock company, which now has a new name: Chocolates El Rey, C.A., the same brand as the
products processed in the factory.

1974 First transformation of the company. This occurs when the processing technology is improved and the
exportation of cacao derivatives (cacao liquor, cacao butter and cacao powder) increases.

1975 The Venezuelan government monopolizes the marketing of cacao in Venezuela in detriment of the
generations of Venezuelans that made history by placing Venezuelan cacao in the world markets.

1979 The construction of a new factory begins in Cumana. State of Sucre, with the intention of transferring all
the operations there. At that time, the city of Cumana absorbed 60% of the national production.

1980 The government changes the rules of the game in so far as cacao prices are concerned by favoring the
export of the cacao grain. The company is forced to abandon its exporting efforts and to focus exclusively on
the domestic market.

1989 After a stable but limited growth period, Chocolates El Rey, C.A. quickly reacts to a new government
initiative: to lead the country along the path of a market economy. A second transformation in foreign trade
takes place in the country; this time, it is based on the comparative advantages of Venezuelan cacao in an
effort to become competitive within a regional and world economic integration scheme.

1995 Inauguration of the new factory in Barquisimeto, Lara State, where all the industrial operations are now
integrated. A new international stage of the company begins with the first exports to the United States.

1997 Massive consumption products are inaugurated and exports are made to Colombia, Surinam, Trinidad,
Curacao and Aruba.

1998 Chocolate exports are made to Japan.

1999 The Venezuelan massive consumption market is explored with a new line of confectionery.

2001 Chocolates El Rey, C.A. is awarded the ISO-9002 certification (given by Fondonorma) thereby
ratifying the company's high quality standards in accordance with the requirements of the Venezuelan

Since people first started enjoying chocolate, it has held a special place in the culinary universe. It is unique
among foods, used as an ingredient, a flavoring, and a foodstuff in its own right. Among the top chocolate
manufacturers, there are artistic and scientific differences, but experimentation has always been considered
key to discovering flavor-favorites. Until now.

Venezuelan corporate king Chocolates El Rey has spilled the beans about this most magical, sought-after
substance! In revealing the hows and whys of premium chocolate, El Rey — the first company ever to so publicly
open up about the highly secretive sweet — has leaped ahead of chocolate manufacturers, pastry chefs, and
chocolate aficionados to capture the hearts and stomachs of consumers. Individuals shopping for the best now
ask about the kind of cacao beans used, where the cacao is sourced, what the percentage of cacao is in the
product, and if the cacao butter is deodorized.

Sweet Secret No. 1 The source, variety and quality of cacao beans used in premium bittersweet and
semisweet chocolate bars are tricky, more so than any other ingredient in any other gourmet confection.

If it's from Europe, is it the best chocolate that a cook can buy? Chocolates El Rey unwraps the Parisian,
Belgian, Swiss sweet to reveal that the fame and fortune of its delectable flavor depends upon the source of
its primary ingredient, namely the cacao bean. Although cacao beans are grown in tropical climates from Africa
to Malaysia, the varietal differences in cacao are found in the origins of the cacao bean versus where the
beans are processed into chocolate. Not all beans are alike: There are ordinary forastero cacao beans, and
there are superior criollo and trinitario beans which produce chocolate of extraordinary flavor and aroma.

Forastero cacao has a hearty growth and makes up the majority of the cacao grown world wide, about 80+
percent. The forastero is a "basic" bean which usually ends up blended with the criollo and trinitario. The
trinitario has many of the flavor characteristics of the criollo bean, with many of the hearty cultivation habits
of the forastero; however, the criollo bean reigns supreme for consumers-in-the-culinary-know.

The trees producing the criollo cacao beans are delicate. In order to thrive, the flavorful criollo (and trinitario)
cacao trees require warm, unusually humid conditions with loose, nutrient-rich soil, shaded sunlight, little or no
wind, lots of rain, and a short dry season. Venezuela is the perfect setting, and El Rey is the only global
producer of premium couvertures using 100% Venezuelan cacao beans.

Sweet Secret No. 2 In the battle for delicious rewards, confidence and information about the quality of
cacao beans and cacao butter can be a cook's best friend.

Since its first manufacturing of chocolate couvertures, and its derivatives in 1973, Chocolates El Rey has
taken the consumer inside not only the world of cacao beans, but butter. All choice chocolate contains a high
percentage of cacao butter — at least 32 percent and often as high as 39 percent. The extra cacao butter
allows the chocolate to form a thinner coating shell than other chocolates. When melted, it is beautifully fluid
with a workable viscosity.

But there is more. The aroma of Chocolates El Rey has the distinct ability to create "taste memories". The
rich flavor stems from cacao butter that is not "deodorized". It stands to reason since each cacao bean is
comprised of approximately 55% butter which carries with it much flavor and aroma. Many European and
American companies are masters at blending the forastero with small percentages of criollo beans they buy so
that their chocolate achieves a decadent taste. Some also add vanilla flavoring, which can sweeten and mellow
the taste.

Most however introduce a deodorized cacao butter to the cacao liquor, stripping cacao flavors. Non-deodorized
cacao butter melts at body temperature with earthy, sensual flavor notes — quite different from those of a
deodorized state. Chocolate connoisseurs call it "mouth-feel", that moment when chocolate is no longer solid,
and not yet liquid; the irresistible sensation is unique to a bite of Chocolates El Rey.

Sweet Secret No. 3 The demand for "melt in your mouth" chocolate is heating up.
The price of chocolate varies greatly from inexpensive candy bars to pricey truffles. Like wine, the price often
depends on the processing and quality of the original ingredients. In the old days, information about premium
chocolates was the exclusive province of certified chefs, fancy food types. That's changed. The explosion in
gourmet cooking has created a demand and supply of sweet information. Individuals shopping for the best now
ask about the kind of cacao beans used, where the cacao is sourced, what the percentage of cacao is in the
product, and if the cacao butter is deodorized.

Chocolates El Rey's candor and excellent ingredients have sent chocolate manufacturers spinning. Virtually all
competitors now sprinkle the magical words "Venezuela" or "Venezuelan cacao" in their product advertisements.
Cacao Barry markets its new line of four chocolates made with 100% "Origin" cacao beans. Felchlin names their
couverture "Maracaibo" 65% (after a city in Venezuela); Valrhona, Michel Cluizel, Chocovic, and Scharffen-
Berger celebrate their use of the Venezuelan cacao in their premium chocolates. Like falling in love, a piece of
chocolate can be heavenly. Taste the difference!

"Chocolate is a serious thing."

Deanna Troi from Star Trek: The Next Generation

March 2002
Company Press Release
Source: Chocolates El Rey, Inc. Caracas, Venezuela.
Contact: Chocolates El Rey, Inc.
P.O. Box: 853
Fredericksburg, TX 78624
Tel: 800-357-3999
The King of Chocolates, Decrees Chocolates El Rey.