Come make chocolate with us!

What’s better than eating chocolate? Making and eating chocolate! We invite you to join us for a hands-on delicious experience that just might forever change the way you see chocolate. It’s the Make-a-bar tour at our factory and café in NE Portland!

As we hope to inspire you with the story of chocolate, we are inspired by your creativity. This post is not complete without a shout out to our make-a-bar tour graduates! Thank you for bringing your creativity to Creo Chocolate, inspiring us, making us laugh, and becoming part of the great big Chocolate Story. We have had quite the potpourri of creative bar artists! We’d like to take a minute to share a few of our favorites:

 

How can you not smile back at this sweet coconut guy? Just look at that. He’s already blushing.

A few people “go for it all,” but this bar really impressed us… 6 tidy rows of tasty flavors! It held the record for most-segments-in-a-single-bar, until several months later, when this eccentric treat came along…

A cheerful gal came through our tour, heard about the previously mentioned bar, and made it her goal to beat the record. And here you have it! A chocolatemaker-verified 9-segment bar.

 

Although we like to periodically change up our flavor options, this next bar is definitely a step away from our “traditional” flavor choices! The artist behind this bar truly loved lavender. The chocolate is infused with lavender oil and sprinkled with dried lavender… without tasting it, we could tell by the smell that the flavor of this bar would definitely linger for a bit!

Finally, we managed to snap a picture of this elegant bar just as it entered its package. A colorful dusting of spices accented a row of dried fruits. We love the style!

 

Some of our artists’ most creative flavor names include:

BERRY BERRY HOT!! (By John)

Cacao ~ If you dare! (By Glenda)

Cinnamon Nightmare (By Jan)

Jazzy Razzy (By Madison)

Too Good To Live (By Ross)

Spicy Miss (By Loretta)

SUNSHINE (By Dani)

Warren’s Mess (By Warren)

Wombo Combo (By Cody)
 
What will your flavor look and taste like? Sign up for your time slot at: http://creochocolate.com/classes/. We look forward to meeting you in the chocolate adventure!

The Creo Chocolate Factory is turning 2!

January 28, 2015

We can hardly believe it… Today marks two years since we opened the doors of our factory and café on NE Broadway Street in Portland!

We started with a few products that we had poured our heart and soul into creating, excited and hopeful for what our shop might grow into. We knew the road ahead would be long and challenging, but we also knew we had come a long ways already. Only a few years before, we had been raspberry farmers experimenting with cacao beans in our kitchen, sharing our creations with neighbors and friends. The creativity developed into drink recipes, baked goods and chocolate bar development. With that farmer’s dirt in our blood, we sought out cacao farmers to source our beans from.

Within a few years, our family’s passion for chocolate had grown into something far more than a hobby…

Janet and Kevin in Ecuador learning about cacao first-hand

Chocolate factory and café construction in 2014

After many months of planning, testing and building, we found ourselves standing at the threshold of a new life adventure in chocolate!

Looking back over two years, we have so much to be thankful for. Our humble home-made test chocolate bars have grown into a repertoire of award-winning handcrafted chocolate goodness. Our excursions into discovering chocolate have become an avenue to educate our community through tours and classes. However, none of what we have today would be possible without the help of family, friends, and our community. Truly, we have been blessed.

This week (January 28 – Feb 4) we invite you to celebrate with us in the shop. Come in and wish us “Happy Birthday!” and we will share with you a complimentary 2nd Anniversary truffle. We look forward to seeing you!

There is a face on my chocolate

The smooth, warm feel of chocolate melting in my mouth overwhelms my memory of our visit to Ecuador. The warm sun felt wonderful to this Pacific Northwest girl, but the hospitality of the people I met continues to warm my heart long after I returned home.

We went to Ecuador looking for a flavor cacao bean to make our chocolate with. I hoped we would also find farmers to buy directly from and we did! Having been raspberry farmers for 17 years, our heart was still in the “dirt” which drove us to pursue a heart connection with our farmer.

Surrounded by cacao trees in my view, in Anna’s kitchen we roasted and tasted beans like she does with each fermentation batch. I appreciate how she knows her beans and actually makes chocolate from them. She sincerely takes pride in growing and selling quality. This is what I wanted to bring home to share with my community.

Being with Samuel and Anna on their farm and in their home left me with a warm connection to a face on my chocolate.

 

It’s time for Portland to experience how chocolate is made!

Our family began making chocolate while living on a raspberry farm in the Portland metro area. Working with chocolate gave us opportunities to express what we truly care about: relationships, putting others first, quality craftsmanship, and making a difference in people’s lives. Driven by our passion for sharing through chocolate, we sold our raspberry farm in order to direct source cacao beans from farmers and open a chocolate workshop in the city.

We want to share our craft with the community in a way that Portland has never seen before; in our workshop you will be able to watch real chocolate being made, from the bean to the bar. The experience will be ready to share with the public this fall. In the meantime, enjoy our video and sign up to receive email updates about our shop. We can’t wait to have you join us.