One of the first chocolatiers in Venezuela to use this vanilla from the Amazon to flavor their chocolate bars was Mr. J. Genia in Puerto Cabello.
The delicious aroma of sarrapia, a seed known as the Amazon vanilla, which is particularly obtained in the Bolívar state of Venezuela, and other countries such as Brazil and Guyana, has been present in Venezuelan chocolate bars since the end of the year 1800.
And it is that in the chocolate factory of Mr. J. Genia, established in Puerto Cabello at the end of the XNUMXth century, these chocolate bars were already produced chocolate with tattered.
This is confirmed by records of the 1883 national chocolate exhibition, which state that some of the bars presented by this chocolate house were flavored with sarrapia, giving it "an extremely pleasant taste."
In addition, Mr. J. Genia's chocolate, who also used vanilla and cinnamon for its preparation, was considered one of the best in the country, successfully exporting to Spain and the United States.
The sarrapia is as Venezuelan as the Creole cocoa
The sarrapia tree is as Venezuelan as that of the criollo cocoa. It can measure up to 30 meters in height, and the largest cultivation areas in the world are found mainly in southern Venezuela.
This fruit, which is harvested every year starting in February, is used for perfumery, gastronomy, the tobacco and pharmaceutical industries, due to its healing properties.
The aripaeños, who are descendants of maroons in Bajo Caura, Venezuela, have been collectors of the sarrapia fruit for centuries, however, it was not until the mid-nineteenth century when this seed began to be a highly valued item abroad. for its aromatic substance, similar to vanilla.
- Text elaborated with information from the book Pioneer industrialization in Venezuela 1820-1936