Whew! After working round the clock in preparation for the Chocology Unlimited Launch and then celebrating all weekend afterwards with our supporters, we were exhausted. And what do we at Chocology do when we’re exhausted? Head to the kitchen, of course!
One of my Ecole Chocolate assignments is to create a unique chocolate recipe. So Madeline and I have been in the kitchen creating all sorts of concoctions; chocolate butterflies, transfer sheets, chocolate clay, fudge, and all sorts of other chocolate goodies.
With all of this cooking, shaping and molding of chocolate, I have come up with 6 Key Factors to consider when working with chocolate and I wanted to share that with you, our loyal readers.
6 Key Factors When Working with ChocolateKey 1:
Ingredients: Your final product is only as good as the ingredients that are in it. ALWAYS use the best ingredients available. When making chocolate treats, this means buying chocolate with higher cocoa butter content.
Key 2:Climate: 68 degrees is perfect for making and storing chocolate. If it’s too warm, your chocolate will melt. Needless to say Madeline and I have been living in a freezer since I’ve begun this class!
Key 3:Altitude: Luckily, sea level is the ideal altitude for chocolate making. Since we live in Port Jefferson, NY, we're good there!
Key 4: Moisture Level: This is a very, very important factor in chocolate making. It impacts tempering, which determines the shine and the shelf life of the final product. Keeping moisture levels down will yield a final product that you’re proud of!
Key 5: Cooking time: Cooking time will be determined by the climate (temperature in your kitchen), altitude and moisture level. Knowing these factors before you begin will assist you in knowing how long to cook your chocolate.
Key 6:Tender Loving Care Most importantly, the love and care that you put into your chocolate project will bring delight to others and a warm feeling in your heart.
So, next time you’re in the kitchen, attempting to make your Christmas chocolates, be sure to keep these factors in mind. Or better yet, head over to our website to experience delightful chocolates that have been lovingly prepared using the 6 Step Method above.
[caption id="attachment_233" align="alignleft" width="271"] Pizza and Ice Cream Party![/caption]
Madeline’s Innovative Thinking Pays Off
We at Chocology pride ourselves on personalizing every experience. Our 12-year-old cofounder, Madeline is no exception. With her big ideas and out of the box thinking, she keeps us hopping with new possibilities.
Madeline and her mom Linda had just attended a girls club meeting where a party for the girls was being planned. Madeline was in charge of providing the treats. As she and her mom drove home, Madeline sat in the passengers seat deep in thought. Conversation bubbles seemed to dance above her head. Pizza party or ice cream social? What should I choose? What would be the most popular option? What will get everyone excited?
Suddenly, Madeline exclaimed, “I’ve got it, Mama! Why can’t we have both? Chocolate on top of pizza crust with ice cream!”
Linda smiled and veered off the road toward their favorite Whole Foods grocery store. With loving care they picked out all natural light multigrain cocoa pop cakes, which would become the pizza crust for their new creation. They also chose a variety of chocolates; dark, semi-sweet and milk.
Ingredients in hand, they set out to make Madeline’s creation a reality. Since the Johnson family normally eats dark chocolate, the milk chocolate proved to be a bit tricky to work with on their “pizza dough.” But their diligence paid off and the pizza crusts were brought to fruition.
Next, they worked on presentation. Linda had the idea to call their favorite pizza place in New York and tell them what they were doing. To make the pizza experience fun, she asked to buy 10 personal pizza boxes to present Madeline’s treats in. The pizza place loved it. “Come on in…,” they said.
When they arrived, Linda and Madeline were surprised that the pizza shop not only provided boxes for the girls, but plates, bags and t-shirts as well. With ice cream in tow, Linda and Madeline made their “pizza” delivery to the girls club. The delight on the girls’ faces was all Madeline needed, to know that her idea was a success.
Madeline’s drive to create limitless possibilities is an inspiration at Chocology. She knows that sometimes we don’t have to choose. Sometimes we can have it all!
Linda’s “Ooops” Moment
So much goes into starting a new business; planning, purchasing, advertising and much more. Linda loves her chocolate business, but at times her mind spins with the conversions that are necessary for the operation of Chocology, an international company.
Time Zone conversions
Euros/British pounds/US Dollars
It was time to get ready for the big U.S. launch promotion. Needing to order chocolates that would be offered as samples to potential customers, she sat down with her computer to make the online purchase from her Belgian Chocolatier.
Making her selections was fun. Her focus on personalizing her sample products was at the forefront of her mind. She excitedly hit the place order button. Ahh. The order was complete.
The confirmation flashed to the screen. She did a double take.
Wait! Did I just order 1,440 pounds of chocolate?Oh NO!!I’m ordering samples, not stocking all of the Whole Food Stores in the U.S.!
Grabbing her phone she hit speed dial to her Belgian supplier. They laughed over her blunder and then got it corrected. All was right in the world.
Luckily Linda knows that these things are bound to happen when running a business. We are human after all. Mistakes turn to learning experiences and she definitely learned one here. Always double-check the Kilo/Pound conversion. Always…
Our North American promotional chocolate will be going out the second week in July. If you would like to try a sample, please contact us at Linda@chocologyunlimited.com.
Chocology: What started as a dream is now a sweet adventure.
Know Your Chocolate, Acknowledge Your Dreams. Yield to Chocolate, Realize Your Dreams!
Oxford, England. April 9, 2014
Chocology ltd., first launched in Oxford Covered Market in 2001 and is reemerging and rebirthing its efforts to provide the most exquisite chocolates, servicing farms shops, independent chocolate shops and discriminating chocolate connoisseurs all across the UK.
Linda Johnson, Owner and Managing Director of this online shop Chocology, along with her 12 year old daughter, Madeline hope to empower their customers to contemplate chocolate in a new way. Their dream of a family business, where Madeline could be a full participant, has been realized through Chocology and they want to inspire their customers to see that chocolate can assist them in reaching their dreams as well.
Linda says, "I've wanted to have a family business ever since I can remember; life such as it is, the timing was never quite right. The moment I discovered Chocology, I knew it was the ideal business for our family. Madeline is passionate about chocolate, the smell, taste and the look of it and so am I! Chocology provides us an exceptional opportunity to study chocolate and bring our customers along with us for the ride. The future of Chocology encompasses endless possibilities...our dream come true."
This Mother-Daughter Duo plan to launch several new products throughout the next year. Chocology products go beyond your normal run-of-the-mill chocolate. Each chocolate, a miniature work of art, is packed to order and never warehoused. Chocology chocolates are hand finished, containing 100% cocoa butter and cream combined with the highest quality natural ingredients available. Each decadent morsel is hand finished with careful artistic style. High in cocoa mass and low in sugar content, this chocolate is actually healthy. Scientific research has recently confirmed chocolate is good for your heart.
Johnson states, "For the past several months we've worked very closely with former owner John Partington. We want to keep what's working-working and expand on that."
Last week Johnson and Madeline spent time touring and tasting chocolate in Belgium--the chocolate capital of the world.
Linda describes that experience saying, "We loved visiting our Chocology chocolate supplier and learning all about the science of how they make our chocolate so special--we even collaborated to develop a unique new product."
"Chocology--the study of chocolate," says Madeline, "need I say more? It doesn't get any better than that!"
As a family owned business, Chocology prides itself on its unique approach to the chocolate business, focusing on exceptional chocolate, personal customer service and superior quality. Chocology will soon be offering something special for everyone, Best gift ever--monthly themed chocolate gifts. Enhance your gift giving experience, with a 5% off coupon for your first order.
The Johnson's have big lans for the future. Chocology Unlimited will be expanding to the Americas in summer 2014.
For more information please contact Linda Johnson at linda@Chocology.co.uk or linda@ChocologyUnlimited.com
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Meeting "our" Chocolatier and Suppliers
-This morning we toured OUR (I use the collective our) Chocolatier with a behind-the-scenes look at making the chocolate. The tour was exceptional and the chocolate mouth-watering. We learned all about the chocolate making process and of course, Madeline was impressed to be able to taste along the way! We had a quick lunch in the car and then onto the packaging company...which was also a great treat! We spent hours looking at all of the lovely packaging and dreaming of the future. It's not everyday one has this opportunity. We'll tell you all about this process once we get home to America and digest. My head is still spinning. We'll also add in photos (where we can)
The only downside of the day is that we were unable to connect Madeline's laptop to the hotel wifi and she was very much looking forward to skyping with her friends from Belgium.
Linda and Madeline
p.s. we plan to close on the business tomorrow in honor of my fathers birthday!