by The Urban Grocer in New Food and Packaging on Saturday 22 January 2011

Delectable chocolate. Such is the Mayan and Nahuatl English translation of the word Ki-xocolatl. It’s also — not coincidentally, of course — the name of a stellar bean-to-bar Mexican-based chocolate collection. The result of years of partnership between a Belgian husband and wife chocolatier team, and Mexican cocoa producers hailing from Chiapas and Tabasco, Ki’xocolatl is a solid marriage of top notch Mexican ingredients and a dash of European techniques.

These organic, gluten-free sweetsare lovingly created using cocoa beans native to Mexico’s tropical jungles and deep groves, blended with local sugar cane and organic vanilla straight from Veracruz. With flavors such as dark chocolate with pink pepper; semi-bitter chocolate with chili and spice; and milk chocolate with cocoa seed ‘criollo tostado’, the collection strongly — and beautifully — reflects Mayan and Mexican traditions. So too does the packaging, with bright colors and indigenous-inspired illustrations.

If you’re lucky enough to find yourself in Merida, Mexico, stop by Ki’Xocolatl’s boutique to indulge in Mayan beverages and heaps of tantalizing cocoa products. Otherwise, keep your eyes peeled for these spicy sweets at your local coffee shop where you may just happily stumble upon a few bars as I did.