There can be much confusion over who makes chocolate, or what “making chocolate” even means. To clear the air, a Chocolate Maker receives the cacao beans, roasts, grinds, and fine tunes it into what we know as chocolate. Chocolate makers can make white chocolate, dark chocolate, and anything in between. A Chocolatier, receives chocolate made by the maker, and uses it to create chocolates, ganaches, figurines, showpieces, confections, and so on. They do not make the chocolate, however they can make chocolates. There are small batch producers who don’t own their own factory but use bigger chocolate makers to work with them to create their own chocolate. Today we will be pointing out the differences on Chocolate Makers vs Chocolatiers, and featuring some local businesses along the way!
A chocolate maker goes through the entire chocolate making process by starting with the raw bean (fermented and dried). There are raw chocolate makers out there, but the bigger part of craft chocolate makers make chocolate as with these steps:
Roasting fermented and dried beans
Depending on the maker: conching
Fill into molds and packaging
We make the chocolate from scratch here at Maui Chocolate Coffee Tours. You will get to do the crack, winnow, and grind with your own two hands!
There are differences between Chocolate Makers vs Chocolatiers. One of the most common misconceptions is that chocolatiers make their own chocolate from cocoa beans. But they don’t!
Chocolatiers leave the purchasing of cocoa beans, roasting, and grinding them into chocolate to ‘chocolate makers’. The chocolatiers simply purchase couverture chocolate to make their creations.
Great chocolatiers take their ingredients and aim to create something truly wonderful.
In other words, the chocolatier is the person who fills chocolates, makes truffles and creates flavored bars. It’s a very different discipline from making chocolate from cocoa beans.
Maui Chocolate Coffee Tours
Here at Maui Chocolate Coffee Tours, we do a little bit of everything! Manager, Tour Guide, Chocolate enthusiast, and now a self-taught fruit to bar chocolate maker, Ann Tuomela, has resided in Maui for the past 35 years.
She graduated from University of Washington, Seattle, WA, with a BS degree in business and marketing. Then, she moved directly to Kihei. You can’t pry her off this rock! She has a self proclaimed club for people like her: The Opihi Club. These delectable tasty treats (limpets) are what fishermen hunt on the ocean lava rocks at low tide. Her friends in the “Opihi Club” have lived on Maui for at least two decades continuously. That means not living elsewhere and then returning to Maui after they miss living here!
After a fulfilling career in the Wine industry for 15 years, she re-evaluated as to why she moved to Maui…not to work for corporate America! Ann opened and operated Who Cut The Cheese for 10 years before opening and looking beyond the chocolate wrapper! For those not familiar, Who Cut The Cheese, was a gourmet cheese and wine shop in Kihei.
“A place for those with fine taste AND a sense of humor!”
Who Cut The Cheese, offered monthly wine and cheese tastings for 5 years at Stella Blues and various other restaurants such as Spago’s at the Four Seasons Wailea, Mala Tavern, and Capische?
We adore Cyndi from @Canadianchocoholic, and wanted to feature her in this month’s blog! She is a true chocoholic with an extensive background.
On Vancouver Island, she worked as a Chocolatier, becoming more interested in chocolate. Since then she has taken tasting classes through Ecole Chocolat and the International Institute of Chocolate and Cacao Tasting, led chocolate tastings, judged the International Chocolate Awards and always continues to learn and read about chocolate.
She is a chocolate sommelier/certified chocolate taster and is always happy to create custom tastings and pairings for all occasions and group sizes. She now offers tastings online for any size of group. Check out her website to learn more!
Cyndi also does consultant work in setting up pairings, offering education around
chocolate, or finding the perfect chocolate to go with your product.
In 2020, she launched a line of hand-sewn, silk screened face masks that allows chocoholics to wear their love of cacao amidst the pandemic. When she struggled to find fabrics she loved, she just designed them on her own! Following this, she created other sewn products and produced fabrics with a chocolate theme including tote bags, zippered pouches and masks. How cute!
Cyndi was also the sponsor of Cacao Magazine issue 3 #womeninchocolate and has an article about her work with jewelry in it. A magazine about all things bean to bar chocolate.
In 2020, she also joined The Chocolate Notebook team for edition 2 of The Chocolate Notebook, an atypical calendar/planner/notebook that takes you on a journey through the year with a focus on chocolate. All the illustrations in the book are created by herself.
Cyndi also brings her love of chocolate to the world through her skills as a goldsmith,
having a line of chocolate-themed sterling silver cacao pods and cacao beans. Using various techniques, she hand crafts and creates unique, wearable art. She designs and makes jewelry, drawing on her professional training and experience as a goldsmith. Her two years of school in metal smithing taught her so many skills that she was able to use to create her sterling silver, bronze and gold cacao inspired pieces of jewelry. Cyndi’s favorite techniques include lost wax casting, construction, and enameling.
In 2021, she stepped away from her full time job due to some health issues that are still in the process of being pinned down… and moved to working more on the art and chocolate side of things. She then launched Happy Mail for Chocolate Lovers in March of 2021, a monthly subscription that allows her to share her creativity and love of chocolate with other chocolate lovers.
You can subscribe to receive digital happy mail, a
physical postcard with a personalized note written on it, or an envelope in
the mail full of chocolate themed goodies each month.
Happy Mail for Chocolate Lovers has been arriving digitally to inboxes around the globe
twice a month, and Happy Mail for Chocolate Lovers postcards and envelopes have been traveling to three different continents each month, bringing joy and surprise to all who receive them. It’s a great treat for yourself, or makes a great gift for a friend.
Being a maker, Cyndi has an appreciation for small batch, one-of-a-kind, local products, produce and small businesses. She shares the joy of chocolate with others through chocolate tastings, sharing bars, reaching into her purse, as well as her handmade jewelry. When she’s not busy eating chocolate, you can find her posting often on IG
@canadianchocoholic and writing her blog.
Although there are vast differences between Chocolate Makers vs Chocolatiers, we all have one thing in common…our love for chocolate! Stay tuned on next month’s blog, where we will dive into the depths of the Global Chocolate Movement and Chocolate Sommeliers!