Craft Chocolate Maker Location: Scottsdale, Arizona
Website: Stone Grindz Chocolate
Date Established: December 2012
Ingredients Used: 3 - Cacao Beans, Organic Cane Sugar, Cocoa Butter
Allergy Information: No dairy, soy, nuts, or gluten
About the Bean to Bar Chocolate Maker:
Kasey grew up in North Carolina and Steven was born in Boulder, CO, both of their life paths brought them to Scottsdale, AZ. Both wanting to find their true passion in life, they couldn't quite settle on a specific major in school and looked to do something independent of that.
In 2012, Kasey and Steven stumbled upon craft chocolate and the chocolate-making process, they were both instantly hooked.
They purchased a stone grinder and started experimenting with all sorts of different cacao beans from different origins and roasting profiles; from hot American style roasts to low temperature European style roasts in all different time frames. They tried out their first farmers market with a crude representation of single origin chocolate and sold out completely. This told them that their community was seeking a craft dark chocolate. Both of them are creators and foodies, and had always had big dreams of running their own business so Stone Grindz Chocolate, a small-batch chocolate company in the heart of the southwest desert in Arizona, was a natural progression for them.
Their process of learning the art of creating single origin dark chocolate started with John Nanci of Chocolate Alchemy. They learned the different roasting mediums along with flavor theory and particle size distribution. After building a base skill set, they began honing in their own unique take on dark chocolate as a whole. They settled into much lighter roasting profiles along with heavy conching to produce a chocolate that was floral, bright, and full of flavor.
Kasey and Steven’s quest to produce exceptional chocolate begins with the highest quality cacao beans that are sourced from different parts of the world. The farmers they work with practice traditional growing techniques that have been passed down through the generations. Once the beans are ready, they are shipped to Kasey and Steven’s tiny chocolate workshop in Scottsdale. The beans are then artfully roasted, cracked, winnowed, ground and conched in small batches, unlocking unique but balanced flavors within each chocolate bar.Stone Grindz has teamed up with local artist Joe Mehl to illustrate the story of its chocolate company. The art is inspired by the culture and traditions of where cacao is grown. Joe’s beautifully hand-drawn artwork is displayed on each of the bars, melding a rustic old-world feel with the nuanced modern techniques found in Stone Grindz’s chocolates.
Kasey and Steven’s goal is to envelop chocolate lovers with a sense of quality and craft, and at the end of the day, make the best tasting chocolate they can.