Centro de Visitantes Cortés (Cortés Visitor Center)

Ever been to the Centro de Visitantes Cortés?

  • Yes and highly recommend it.

  • Yes, but will not be going back.

  • No, but planning to go.

  • No and not interested.


Results are only viewable after voting.

NALs

Polls Forum Moderator
Jan 20, 2003
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Cortés Hermanos is the main chocolate producer and seller in the DR with all their products widely sold in supermarkets and colmados all over the country. Founded in Santo Domingo in 1929 by a Puerto Rican immigrant, it's present for the most part in the DR and Puerto Rico. A few months ago they open a visitor center at one of their installations in Pedro Brand by the Duarte Highway. Given the location it appears it's mostly targetted to a Dominican public, but anyone can visit. Appointments were needed during the pandemic, don't know now.

The new visitor center in Pedro Brand, Santo Domingo province.
FBE54602-CAA6-4A26-9279-F73255BD2AB9.jpeg


Some of their products most likely seen my some expats in Dominican supermarkets.
99E20A1B-CF3F-4AC4-ADD1-57C79C3EF81D.jpeg


All videos about this place by the company and by others are in Spanish. The fact it has been open for several months and there is not one video in English is a sign tourists are not being taken here.



An amateur video of a visit to the place (also in Spanish).


Any expats have been here? Review? Are any tours done in English?


Photos from:
 
Last edited:

JD Jones

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I'm not a big fan of Cortes chocolate. I've never bought one that wasn't turning white.
 
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Tom F.

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Jan 1, 2002
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This is a definite stop during my next trip. The chocolate sold in the DR and the latino markets in the US from Cortes Hermanos is not of high quality. It is edible and affordable. Recently they have developed a line of fine chocolate called Fortaleza. I have not tasted it yet. I saw one of the family members speak at the Fine Chocolate Industry Association in NYC a few years back. The talk mostly centered around their participation in reviving cacao production in PR. I actually bought 5 kilos of Puerto Rican grown beans and will be making chocolate with them soon enough.
 

Tom F.

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I'm not a big fan of Cortes chocolate. I've never bought one that wasn't turning white.
It's called "bloom" and you can still eat it. The white bloom is caused from being exposed to temperatures above 90 F.. Looks weird, affects the melt, but not spoiled. If the chocolate comes into contact with moisture, the sugar will migrate to the surface and is called sugar bloom. This chocolate is more likely to go bad due to it being sort of a ganache.
 
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JD Jones

Moderator - Covid 19 in DR & North Coast
Jan 7, 2016
5,800
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It's called "bloom" and you can still eat it. The white bloom is caused from being exposed to temperatures above 90 F.. Looks weird, affects the melt, but not spoiled. If the chocolate comes into contact with moisture, the sugar will migrate to the surface and is called sugar bloom. This chocolate is more likely to go bad due to it being sort of a ganache.
Correct. I'm still not crazy about the taste. I guess I'm spoiled on Swiss and Belgian chocolates.
 

Tom F.

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Correct. I'm still not crazy about the taste. I guess I'm spoiled on Swiss and Belgian chocolates.
It is a little joke in the chocolate world about the definition of Swiss or Belgian chocolate. No cacao grown there so I guess it is about the process of turning it into chocolate. But some chocolate makers claim they make Belgian chocolate outside of Belgium. There are a handful of people making very nice chocolate in the DR using Dominican cacao. KahKaw, Definate, Xocolat, Miltz and few other I can not remember off the top of my head.
 

NALs

Polls Forum Moderator
Jan 20, 2003
10,779
1,430
113
This is a definite stop during my next trip. The chocolate sold in the DR and the latino markets in the US from Cortes Hermanos is not of high quality. It is edible and affordable. Recently they have developed a line of fine chocolate called Fortaleza. I have not tasted it yet. I saw one of the family members speak at the Fine Chocolate Industry Association in NYC a few years back. The talk mostly centered around their participation in reviving cacao production in PR. I actually bought 5 kilos of Puerto Rican grown beans and will be making chocolate with them soon enough.
Their Puerto Rico venture still pales in comparison with the Dominican one. From my understanding, they have DR sales over US$18 million and it appears they have yet to break the US$1 million mark in PR. That's quite a comparison.
 

JD Jones

Moderator - Covid 19 in DR & North Coast
Jan 7, 2016
5,800
3,203
113
It is a little joke in the chocolate world about the definition of Swiss or Belgian chocolate. No cacao grown there so I guess it is about the process of turning it into chocolate. But some chocolate makers claim they make Belgian chocolate outside of Belgium. There are a handful of people making very nice chocolate in the DR using Dominican cacao. KahKaw, Definate, Xocolat, Miltz and few other I can not remember off the top of my head.
I've tried them all. More than once. Everything manufactured here is processed to not melt for obvious reasons.

As one example, If you buy Milka chocolate (Originally Swiss but now made in Germany) it usually will start melting pretty much when you walk out the door of the supermarket.
 

Tom F.

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Jan 1, 2002
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I've tried them all. More than once. Everything manufactured here is processed to not melt for obvious reasons.

As one example, If you buy Milka chocolate (Originally Swiss but now made in Germany) it usually will start melting pretty much when you walk out the door of the supermarket.
That usually happens when cacao butter is added. Most cacao has 50-55% cacao butter and much of the European chocolate adds another 10--20%. Many of the new chocolate makers in the US pride themselves on being 2 ingredient chocolate, cacao and sugar. I find that when I add more than 28% sugar (72%) a little cacao butter is needed due to the thickness. I personally do not need the Euro melt but am looking at flavor. Try Definate, the owner and founder is German and named Jen. Very nice fellow He started from stratch and has nicely developed an international brand over a fairly short time.

Milz is also a small maker somewhere near Sosua. She has done a very nice job, but not sure if she is Dominican or originated elsewhere. Also a Bulgarian near Punta Cana who under the named Chin Chin chocolate. A venezuelan in Santiago has Khao Caribe. Cacaoteca is another. There are quite few more that I am less familar with and will stand up to most European style chocolate.

Check out chocolate.do.