Bean to Bar Chocolate Maker: Triangle Roasters
Bean to Bar Chocolate Maker Location: Philadelphia, PA
Chocolate Makers: Mikey Master, Jeana Master, Joy Zernhelt, Souleyman Ngae
Website: Triangle Roasters
Date Established: January 2016
Ingredients Used: 3 - Cacao Beans, Cane Sugar, Cocoa Butter
Current Chocolate Production Output: 2000+
Allergen Information: Made on equipment that also processes nuts, dairy, and coconut, in a facility where wheat is present
Triangle Roasters was started by four friends – Mikey, Jeana, Joy and Joe – who wanted to do something beautiful and meaningful in the world. They see chocolate and coffee as a relationship, and imagine the connections between grower, maker and consumer forming a connected triangle where all three pathways are transparent and healthy. They love the opportunity to highlight the work of the growers, whose commitment to meticulous farming is the most critical step in making an exceptional chocolate bar or a great cup of coffee.
Experiences in grad school studying International Development, as well as living outside the US and coming into contact with coffee, cacao and farming communities ultimately led the team away from the non-profit sector into fulfilling their dream of starting a chocolate and coffee business. Their main focus and values are shared by many other small-batch chocolate makers – transparent trade, sustainability focused, deep care for neighbors both locally and internationally, and making some of the best chocolate in the world.
As head chocolate maker, Mikey has been waking up thinking about making chocolate since his first batch in 2010, though the chocolate-making process continues to be a team effort. After many late nights of experimentation on a home roaster and a homemade winnower, they remember the bright, fruity cranberry flavor in their first great bar. It was this bar that made them believe there was a future for Triangle.
Jeana, Triangle’s lead roaster, dials in each bean before processing begins and this is where they have noticed the biggest differentiator in their chocolate, from one sample to the next, and one maker to another. Being dual makers, they believe their expertise in coffee roasting and understanding roast profiles have helped them get the most delicious flavors out of each cacao bean. To them, each cacao bean is a treasure.
Triangle hopes to honor all the hard work that went into each bean by meticulously caring for it till its final destination in a bar of chocolate. In short, they care about people and flavor, and think that makes their chocolate stand out. If they make a chocolate available, it is because they love it and want others to share in the love!