ARTISAN OF THE HOUR
Art Pollard, Amano Chocolate
Whoops, that's not Art photoed above, but Gene Wilder... here's Art: Should I entitle this entry: Local Chocolatier Mistaken for Willy Wonka
A few days ago I met co-founder of
Amano Chocolates... new chocolatier in the area and maker of that rich, earthy, serotonin-boosting, nutty chocolate that has me mezmerized.
I have to say that Art, with his hair a bit unruley standing in a chocolate factory....looked a bit like the eccentric Gene Wilder from the movie Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory fame. Only he's much more pratical and less wild than Wilder, but with a boyish kind of idealism and passion for his chocolate making. He's like that guy in your science or engineering class who wows everyone at the science fair with some new-fangled invention.
I had decided to make a pie with Amano chocolate so I stopped by their factory to get some bulk chocolate.
So I met Clark and Art at their factory, a simple cinderblock building off center street in Orem. Art was unhusking a cocoa bean and munching on the bittery but mysterious raw cocoa inside the shell. I asked for a taste and tried some from different countries where he sources his beans (all top secret, he says.) But you can imagine, some from Indonesia, some from South America, some from Africa.
Cocoa Beans used to make Amano's Chocolate:
Here's Clark opening some chocolate. Art and Clark have known each other since college, the two studied physics together.
My pies made with Amano Chocolate:
A tart cherry pie (with cherries from South Ridge Farms in Santaquin)
with a layer of crumbled Amano chocolate on the bottom.
A banana cream pie made with homemade cream (with raw sugar and Drake family goat milk) a sprinkle of nutmeg, bannanas and layer of Amano's chocolate on the bottom.