Artisan Spotlight: Anna and Robbie of Ritual Chocolate
One of the first Colorado-made artisanal products we picked up when we started Colorado Crafted was Ritual Chocolate. Oh man, we love their stuff. Tasting these single origin chocolate bars is a lot like tasting wine - the cacao beans from different terriors create very different tasting notes. The Madagascar bar is light and citrusy, the Costa Rica has tasting notes of walnut and blackberry, and the list goes on. Ritual makes 5 different single origin craft chocolate bars at current count!
We were so excited to have the chance to visit their production facilities in Denver recently, check out all their crazy cool chocolate making machinery, and get to know the Ritual chocolate duo.
We asked them a few questions so you could get to know them a bit and learn more about the amazing things they're doing.
Artisan Spotlight: Ritual Chocolate
What part of this do you love most, and what’s your favorite thing you’ve created?
I think we love all our bars equally. They were each a journey for us, finding a farm to work with and then refining the process to bring out the flavors of those cacao beans. Each chocolate tells a story of the farm and origin through the flavor profile.
Tell us a little bit about what makes your products unique and interesting.
We are trying to source the best cacao in the world and use traditional, European methods that bringing out the flavor of the cacao. We are really trying to put flavor first for every step of the chocolate making process. This is actually a rare thing in today's market. Most chocolate today is over processed using poor quality cacao beans which results in chocolate with flat flavor. With our single origin line, we are really trying to show the range and uniqueness of flavors you can get from quality cacao beans.
What have been some of the biggest surprises or challenges you’ve encountered during your time as an artisan?
I think when we first started making chocolate, we thought as long as we have an outstanding product it will sell off the shelves. However, we are essentially trying to undo 50+ years of chocolate being treated and priced as candy. We have to really get out there and educate people on what the process is, why our chocolate costs more, and why it should be treated as a fine food. It's a challenge, but our favorite part of what we do, is talking about and sharing our chocolate with people.
How long have you lived in Colorado, and what do you love most about it?
We have both lived here for about 10 years. The Colorado mountains are what we love most. Getting out and biking, hiking, run, skiing and enjoying nature in anyway we can!
Are there any other Colorado artisans that you’re into right now?
How long have you got? The list goes on. There are so many people in a mile radius of our factory that are doing fantastic things.
From the left: A conveyor belt on an antique piece of European machinery separates the cacao beans from their shells, a chocolate disc, and stacks upon stacks of golden wrapped chocolate bars.
You can find Ritual Chocolate boxes in these curated gift boxes.
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