Bean to Bar Chocolate Maker: CAR Artisan Chocolate
Bean to Bar Chocolate Maker Location: Pasadena, California
Chocolate Makers: Haris Car
Website: CAR Artisan Chocolate
Date Established: September 2019
Ingredients Used: 3 - Cacao Beans, Cane Sugar, Organic Cacao Butter
Current Chocolate Production Output: Approximately 6000 bars/month
Allergen Information: Produced in a facility that also processes nuts and dairy
Originally of Bosnian heritage, chocolate maker Haris Car spent 6 years working in the coffee industry for Philz Coffee, both in retail and wholesale. Having an entrepreneurial mindset from a young age, his time at Philz set the foundation for him to finally venture out on his own.
In the summer of 2019, Haris and his girlfriend Amanda took a trip to Peru. Driving through the beautiful countryside and meeting the locals left a lasting impression on him. It wasn’t until the tail end of the trip that they stumbled upon a small artisan chocolate factory called Chaqchao. Chaqchao’s chocolate was unlike any other chocolate he’d previously tried, which is what led him to go back the next day to participate in the chocolate factory tour. The day after the tour, when he was on his connecting flight home from Colombia, he told Amanda, “I’m going to start a chocolate business”.
When he got home, he started researching chocolate making and came across John Nanci. This led him to buy a few pounds of cacao beans and his first melanger. After getting a few batches under his belt and giving countless samples to his friends and family, the reality of becoming a chocolate maker finally started to set in. Thus, CAR Artisan Chocolate was born!
Haris places a huge importance on sourcing cacao from sustainable operations where he is able to establish and build relationships with the producers. As CAR Artisan Chocolate scales, his goal is to work with fewer origins, but ultimately purchase more cacao from the producers. He currently sources directly and through Meridian Cacao.
The chocolate-making process at CAR Artisan Chocolate is designed to produce chocolate that not only tastes smooth and delicious, but which also evokes intrigue and conversation around the origins it works with. Its chocolate equipment is centered around a repurposed drum roaster and stone-wheel melanger that refines and conches the chocolate until it is silky smooth and balanced.