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Indonesia’s 4 Chocolate Origins

As the third largest cacao producers in the world, Indonesia has many single origin chocolate to offer

Even though Pipiltin still have their dessert café in Sarinah, they focus in the 32 variants of chocolate bars. Of course, it is interesting to discuss the variants with different kinds of nuts and short bread, but any company can do that. I prefer to talk about their 4 Indonesian single origins chocolate, it’s what separates Pipiltin from the competition. The 4 regions are: Pidie Jaya Aceh, Glenmore East Java, Tabanan Bali, and Tanazozo (read: Tanaroro) Flores.

The best thing about these single origins is they have their own distinctive characteristic. “Aceh is very strong in the nuttiness, more to cashew. East Java is very bright, acidic, with notes such as raisin and honey. Bali is more to the fruity side, full bodied with caramel notes, but not as acidic. Flores is interesting because it features special coconut sugar which resulted in savory, coffee, and orange like notes,” explained Irvan, the owner of Pipiltin Cocoa.

Irvan Helmi also told us stories behind the regions. “About the name Glenmore East Java, we don’t make it up, it’s the actual name of the district. Glen actually means hills, it’s an old Javanese language. More comes from Alex More, a Dutch businessman who has vast land in East Java, near Banyuwangi. Because all of the land belongs to Alex More, people call it Glenmore. Meanwhile Tanazozo is actually the name of the tribe in Flores. It consists of only 6 villages. We’d like to expose their name to motivate them to procreate, so they don’t become extinct,” he laughed.

Maintaining the good relation and cacao bean supply from these regions isn’t easy, but Irvan has a clever way to do it. ”One of the tricks, is to use the region’s name or the tribe’s name so they will responsible for their products. For example, let say I’m a painter, I can paint ugly pictures as long as I got paid, but when the painting got my name on it, I’ll make sure to paint it wholeheartedly.”

What you see in Pipiltin’s outlet in Sarinah is probably only a little fraction of what the business really is. In fact, some of the leading 5 star hotels in Jakarta have already become Pipiltin’s loyal customers. “I know pastry chefs often run out of ideas, they’d be proud if they can find new sexy ingredients which are not mass produced, and we filled that niche market,” explained Irvan.

In the next 5-10 years, Irvan believed strongly that the chocolate business will grow very fast, so does the local demand. “While waiting for the demand to rise, we will focus on the export. I’m also sure that there will be many bean to bar companies like Pipiltin, we’ll have competitors. However, we are confident with our concept of Indonesia’s single origins bean. We will have all of the cacao bean from Indonesia, from west to east,” Irvan concluded.

Sarinah Building
Jalan M. H. Thamrin No. 11
Gondangdia, Menteng
Jakarta Pusat, DKI Jakarta 10350, Indonesia
Phone: +62 21 31923008