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December 13, 2017
Chocolate bars are in the shop! Last month, with the help of a Kickstarter Project that ran in October, we were able to purchase the large initial packaging run for our new line of 6 flavored chocolate bars. We are so excited to bring them to market and share them with you.
I’ve just put them onto our online shopping cart if you would like to order some for the holidays. Supplies limited!
We debuted the new bars at the NW Chocolate Festival, but it was a nail biter and down to the wire to get everything in place to do so. First the chocolate making process took a while longer than expected (we missed the judging window by a day), and then the packaging that was supposed to arrive on a Tuesday arrived on Friday at 6pm the –night before- the festival. We spent the evening setting up our booth at the show, and then had to call in friends to put in a late night at the kitchen folding and assembling. But we did it!
The bars were a big success at the festival and every flavor had it’s own group of fans. By a slim margin, the more popular two bars were the Rosemary, Honey, Sea Salt, and the Guajillo Chili, Hibiscus, Cinnamon, and Vanilla. Let us know which ones you like best.
Since the festival our challenge has been production. We are just selling them so quickly! Hence why we waiting to put them up online until now. You can now find our chocolate bars at the following locations around Seattle:
Sugarpill on Capitol Hill
Anchorhead Coffee in Seattle and the one in Issaquah
World Spice Merchants at Pike Place Market
Finalizing lease & bank approvals: DONE
Defining work scope and negotiating contractor bids: DONE
Demo: IN PROGRESS
Floors: IN PROGRESS
Wall repair and paint: PENDING
Install casework, furniture, shelving, and equipment: PENDING
Grand opening date: Early February Target
We’ve demo’d out the existing bar and cut away the drywall to give us another 3 feet of room on the north end. As Sarah said sadly, “The ‘Harry Potter Closet’ is gone now.”Sarah and Phil helped to put this little "behind the scenes" together before we started construction.
We knew that our perception of the space would change once there was more room to move around in there, but we were still surprised how much the space changed. Suddenly there was more exposed concrete (which looks awesome!), and the shape of the bar we’d planned didn’t make sense anymore. We’ve made some updates, planned out what paint colors to put where, and are moving forward.
The construction crew was in the shop this week sanding the concrete floors to remove the patchy black paint. The sanding should help take the concrete back to a more natural state, and from there we’ll give it a glossy seal finish to protect it, make it water proof, and give the concrete visual depth. The concrete will be a nice neutral tone for all the wood, stainless steel, and plant life.
We are finalizing our needed-equipment list this week, and then we’ll wrap up our final layout and concept drafts. We can’t wait to share those with you! The last 5-6 weeks have all been planning and logistics, while at the same time preparing for the holiday rush and training new team members to get through it. It’s stressful work and not pretty, but necessary. We have a really strong crew right now, both in the kitchen and the retail store, and working on the build out of the new café. Exciting things are coming.
We’ve been saying that late January is the target opening date, but now we are thinking the first week of February and just in time for Valentine’s Day. Thank you again for following along, and stay tuned for a more visual update with drawing and plans next time!
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