Tcho: Beta Chocolate from the Founder of Wired
You know how sometimes you’re confronted with something that is so over your head it’s embarrassing? This is a familiar feeling for me. I felt it through every math class of high school, during a conversation with a friend who works as an industrial designer for venerable pie-plate company Pyrex (I thought we’d have so much in common—I like pie, he designs pie plates! All was going fine until he started to talk polymers) and, most recently, while reading the website for SF-based chocolate company Tcho.
The chocolate revolution will be digitized.
I’m not sure how a 29,000 square foot chocolate factory located at Pier 17 (the only chocolate factory in San Francisco) has somehow escaped my scrutiny, but until these bars arrived (in two versions, chocolatey and fruity) at our office, I hadn’t heard about this collaboration between chocolate-maker (and former space shuttle technologist) Timothy Childs and CEO Louis Rossetto (better known as the founder of Wired magazine).
They imported their equipment from a defunct chocolate factory in Wernigerode, Germany, but otherwise this operation is state-of-the-art—with plans to use the internet, Web 2.0 and webcams to connect customers to the chocolate-making process. I’ll leave you to explore the website on your own (don’t miss the video here), adding only this: The chocolate, which has been rolled out in a “beta” version, (meaning they’re actively soliciting eater feedback and tweaking the recipe, and it’s only available for purchase through the website) is really, really good. They have two versions, fruity and chocolatey, and my preliminary, unofficial favorite is the chocolatey, which has 70% cacao but still melts nicely on the tongue.