Local foodie, Craig, here. I decided to take one for the team and taste test a potential Valentine’s day gift for you. (I know… You’re welcome!)
My taste test confirmed, if you’re in love with a chocolate kind of guy or gal, Raphio Chocolate is the perfect gift for Valentine’s Day.
This locally-owned chocolate company makes their chocolate from single origin beans. This style of chocolate creation means you can taste the variety of flavors from around the world, in their purest form.
Elisia Otavi-Makmur and Yohannes Makmur are the owners of this family run business (pictured below). The name Raphio comes from combining the names of their two sons, Raphael and Rio. Now that’s a family business!
If you love supporting locally-owned businesses, it doesn’t get any easier than buying locally made chocolate this Valentine’s day. Plus Raphio Chocolate collaborates with other local businesses, so you are helping several other gifted small businesses at the same time. Raphio has partnered with Enzo Olive Oil, and Kuppa Joy, for example.
These chocolates have won so many awards from the International Fancy Foods Show, the California Food Expo, and recently and the Good Food Award 2019 for 72% Meyer Lemon Olive Oil, the International Chocolate Salon in SF Gold Medal for the Clementine Olive Oil and from the Academy of Chocolate Awards in London (2 silver and 2 bronze awards).
Raphio has recently begun to make a tea from the husks of the cacao beans. This product is the first of its kind. It’s created very similarly to
Every part of the chocolate making process is done by hand. Everything is from scratch from cocoa beans to hand cut bars. The process includes: hand sorting the cacao, roasting, cracking, removing shells (which they save for tea), grinding nibs, then blocking and aging the chocolate, lastly, tempering and molding, and then finally wrapping the chocolate bars.
You can purchase chocolate bars or nibs (nibs can be added to smoothies, baked goods or your breakfast bowl). They have a nice retail store in front of their small factory. They also give occasional tours by request.
You can go taste the magic for yourself at the southwest corner of First and Barstow at 783 East Barstow. Be sure to follow Raphio on Facebook to keep up with new events and products.
Oh, and if your sweetie loves her chocolate gift from Raphio – it was all your idea. 😉