By Sierra Tishgart | December 10 2015
The Mast Brothers Respond to Attacks on Their Chocolate’s Authenticity
Since brothers Rick and Michael Mast launched Mast Brothers in Brooklyn in 2007, chocolate experts have long debated the reason for the brand’s popularity. Is the chocolate actually high-quality and bean-to-bar, as claimed, or is most of the appeal related to the twee, adorable packaging? Experts have criticized the quality of the chocolate over the years, but now a Dallas-based chocolate blogger who goes by Scott has launched one of the harshest attacks on the company yet, claiming the brothers haven’t always been honest about where their chocolate comes from. In his first post on the topic, the blogger makes a case that, in the early years, the Masts didn’t make their own chocolate, but instead remelted industrial chocolate. He argues, in part:
Small bean-to-bar makers generally source cacao with distinctive flavor characteristics (and often, unfortunately, flaws) that persist, through minimalist processing, in the finished chocolate. But each Mast Brothers bar had a flat, roasty, anodyne flavor typical of industrial manufacturers using bulk cacao from western Africa. More suspiciously, the texture was as smooth and slick as store-bought couverture from a multinational behemoth, which is unimaginable from a small maker using tabletop stone grinders. If the Mast Brothers did make that chocolate, I had never seen such a perfect mimic of blandly competent middle-market industrial chocolate before, nor have I in the nearly eight years since.
This claim is further explored in a second post, as Scott explains that even with all of the media attention Mast received, “There was almost no public information about how the Mast Brothers were making all of this chocolate.”
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