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from bean to bar

We are a craft chocolate making company that participates in local pop up markets and online sales only. We do not have a storefront at this time, though we hope to in the future! Please check our events tab to find us around Champaign-Urbana!

Step 1: Sorting and Roasting Cacao Beans

We start by hand-sorting each batch of cacao beans to remove any beans that are less than perfect or foreign objects (rocks, sticks, burlap fibers, or other impurities). Once they are sorted, we carefully roast them to bring out their rich and unique flavors.

Step 2: Cracking and Winnowing Cacao Beans

Once the beans are roasted and cooled, we crack them to start the process of removing the husks. The mixture of nibs and husks go through a process called winnowing, which removes the lighter, paper-like husks and leaves the nibs, which are used to make our craft chocolate.

Step 3: Refining Chocolate

Our craft chocolate uses only two ingredients: the roasted cacao nibs and pure raw cane sugar. We put these ingredients into a machine called a melanger that has a granite base and two large granite wheels that rotate and grind the chocolate for at least 24 hours.

Step 4: Tempering and Molding Chocolate

Once the chocolate has reached a silky-smooth mouthfeel, it is tempered (a manipulation of temperature and agitation) to ensure a proper cocoa butter crystal structure, which gives it a good shine and snap. From there, it is ready to be molded into bars, bark, and other Chikondi confections.

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