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Mar 19, 2008 09:41 AM

venezuelan black

having watched and been annoyed by mr willy, i feel a strong reticence to purchase aforementioned 100% cacao

there is a small temptation to try it, not in mushroom risotto but perhaps the cloud forest cake or even the gazpacho.

at present i am happy to throw in a couple of squares of michel cluizel 85 or 99 but i have a nagging temptation to try this venezuelan black.

what do we think of his products ?

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  1. venezuelan black becomes venezuelan blagg.Turns out Mr Cooze was playing at being poor. see below.

    March 23rd - 11:08pmMike Townsend said...
    Thankfully Willies Wonky Chocolate Factory has now ended, so hopefully my blood pressure can return to normal.

    What I found most distasteful about the series is the blatant misrepresentation by both the tv producers and the Harcourt-Coozes of their supposed financial poverty. Much was made throughout the series of the ‘financial hole’ that the family are in, yet this is the very same Willie and Tania who lived at Chanters House in Ottery St Mary until 2006 when their ‘trust’ sold the house through Knight Frank for several million pounds. The contents were sold separately by Sothebys for another £1.5 million. They still own several other houses around Ottery St Mary. It is scandalous to suggest the family are anything other than very wealthy. The size of their rented house should be enough to raise alarm bells that all is not quite as it seems.

    As for the series itself? Awful and totally contrived is the best way I could summarise it. The whole series amounted to nothing more than a four hour advert to launch Willies product. I suspect the programme maker and Willie were good friends before filming even commenced.

    Mike Townsend

    Here is an article Tania wrote about living at Chanters House -

    About the sale and Tania’s father making it clear whose decision it was to sell -

    About the sale of the house contents -

    2 Replies
    1. re: pecandanish

      Is this thread now about the TV programme or the chocolate.

      Have to say I neither watched the prog. nor have I tried the choc.

      1. Agree the series was essentially a lengthy product plug and the notion that the family was wavering near the poverty line was laughable. But it looks like a fun ingredient. According to it should be available in Waitrose. Recipes all seem to be available at

        3 Replies
        1. re: Londoner27

          mike townsend is the guy whos thread i copied when searching for more info on Mr Willy and his chocolate.

          it looks fun to use, i fancy making at least the chicken mole. i just dont like the fact that it is a sham and essentially just a rich kid getting free advertising on channel 4 and treating us all like idiots.

          1. re: pecandanish

            Thanks pecan. I thought maybe he was a guru I'd never heard of yet. I agree that it would be fun to try the chocolate at least once. My husband seemed agreeable and willing to try it, too. I find all of the cooking, reality shows (especially Gordon Ramsay's) to be truly insulting. I don't know why the producers think we can't tell how staged his restaurant turnarounds are. We keep asking ourselves why we watch. :-) That said, the last American version had one place near where I used to live, but I had never heard of it... which doesn't mean anything.

            1. re: zuriga1

              One of the early Ramsey "disasters" was in Ambleside (Cumbria). I knew it before and, whilst it is better now, it was not a disaster then. Of course, as you indicate, he doesnt do restaurants that have no chance of turnaround. The word "sham" comes to mind.

        2. I found this website that has loads of recipes and useful info about Willie's chocolate brand:

          4 Replies
          1. re: demoree

            at the end of ramsays kitchen nightmares USA, if you are able to slow down the credits, there are real gems suchs as;

            "some diners may have had all or part of the costs of their meals covered by the producers"


            "some scenes shown did not occur in chronological order shown during this program"

            all we need now is;

            "dramatisation, may not have happended"

            talking of ramsays past nightmares the walnut tree has fallen into the hands of shaun hill and i am desperate to go

            1. re: pecandanish

              Good for Shaun. I thought he was happy with his Worcester place and his various (presumably) lucrative advisory contracts. I'll have to add it to the "must visit" list now - we only ever got to eat once at the Merchant House. Memorable grub.

     ........and I quote from the website

              "There’s no dress code or similar pomposity. Journalists will no doubt be offering independent views. This site will not offend visitors with smarmy overstatements of what's on offer."

              Doncha just love it!!!!!

              1. re: Harters

                just as it should be. he got a near perfect review in the guardian (apart from a wobbly table). maybe we can draw him to Juniper with our plaintive cries of desperation or he could rescue the Modern.

                1. re: pecandanish

                  Today's Evening News carries the unsurprising story that Kitching's sous chef, Kate, is going with him to Edinburgh.

                  Doomed; doomed; we're all doomed.