A Little Biology, A Little Chocolate

2015.Feb.14 Saturday

in Drink, Life

Mostly just pictures today – a visit to the Tirimbina Biological Reserve and cocoa plantation. Seven of us in a mini-van from San Jose for an hour and a half to the north, and then a pretty beautiful day for hiking through the rainforest. My zoom lens came in handy this venture!

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Midway through the hike we stopped at small site in the midst of where they’re growing cocoa plants – it’s not really a plantation as they’re just growing enough for research study and these demonstrations. We followed the whole process from tree to the “original” cocoa drink (delicious!) and on to chocolate production – all done by hand, and with tasting every step of the way. Fascinating stuff! And, I got volunteered by our guide to crack open a cocoa pod, which he swore wouldn’t be easy – and then was shocked when I did it in one hit against the stump – apparently I’m a quite talented monkey.

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Of course, we couldn’t go without any food in the post – at the end of the trip we stopped by a local “soda”, or diner, Soda Marielos, a couple of picnic tables setup in front of the owner’s house, where he serves up casados for lunch – it’s the traditional lunch dish here, a plate of rice, beans, spaghetti, potato salad, cabbage salad, and avocado (or some similar variation, always, however, with the rice and beans part), and accompanied by a choice of meat – here a pork chop with onions, there was chicken available two different ways, beef, and fish, as well.

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And thus, we finish off San Jose and surrounds. On to Jacó! And I need to shower and get into the kitchen to continue prepping for tonight’s dinner.

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