Catching Up With Hunters Chocolates

Hunters chocolates – Keylink WP

Nestled away in a restored North Norfolk barn known as Home Farm House, you’ll find Hunters Chocolates…

We caught up with Gary Hunter recently to discuss his newly opened Hunters Academy of Food and all things chocolate. Being a Callebaut Ambassador, Gary knows a thing or two about chocolate!

Hunters Chocolate favour natural, sustainable ingredients and handcrafting each element of their products. The result is a range of unique chocolates that offer standout flavours and visual results.

Gary started his journey as a Callebaut Ambassador in Westminster College as a pastry chef and lecturer. Years later, whilst recuperating following a period of illness, Gary took some time to reflect, whilst fully indulging his passion for chocolate making and cookery to help with his recovery. With friends and family already requesting his chocolates, he realised the demand for naturally flavoured confectionery was out there.

And so, nearly 30 years on from his start at Westminster College, he has made the decision to open the doors of Hunters Chocolate and Hunters Academy of Food, helping budding chocolatiers, bakers, pastry chefs and cooks embrace their creativity and talents. Describing the Academy, Gary mentions that he wants it to be a calming environment where people can grow and learn. “It’s all about creativity and development”, he says.

For chocolatiers, he offers courses detailing the basics of working with chocolate, with progression classes for chocolate bars, moulding bonbons and creative chocolate work.

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As if chocolate and bakery wasn’t enough talent in one Academy, Gary goes a few steps further, using his knowledge as a pastry chef and offers his bakery teachings also.

When we discussed the bakery aspects, the perspective remains the same in helping and teaching anyone starting from scratch. However, Gary says “I’d like to see us use Callebaut’s range of bake stable products”, mentioning he feels that they can be a little under utilised and will be featured in some of his bakery teachings.

He hastened to mention that of course he will always be listening to customer needs and market demands, saying “we will diversify based on the demands for skills and learning that are out there”.

We couldn’t leave our chat without borrowing a little bit of inspiration, so, we asked what inspires him. Finding inspiration in working with the other Barry Callebaut Ambassadors, he loves to see them push the boundaries of chocolate design and their constant innovation. His work with all natural and sustainable flavours also means he can really invest a focus on fresh tasting chocolates. The challenge of course, as all chocolatiers know, is making these as long life as we can, while preserving the natural flavours of each chocolate!

You can see more about Hunters Chocolates and Hunters Academy of Food on their website.