Wednesday, July 30, 2014

The Lady behind My Chocolate in the UK



Sisters and Brothers, today we are meeting the woman behind the UK company "My Chocolate," Hannah Saxton.  We've done this interview because the UK is our third highest readership here on The Chocolate Cult and we've featured a few companies in the past from the UK and hope to include more in the future. If I should ever make it that way, I hope that "My Chocolate" invites me to an event to review it for you all.  With that in mind, let's move on to the review.



Hannah, would you tell our readers what exactly "My Chocolate" is?

MyChocolate specialises in chocolate fun! We run chocolate making workshops for private parties, team building events, gift experiences, birthday parties and hen dos. 

During the workshops our Chocolatiers entertain everyone with the history of chocolate and the process from cocoa bean to chocolate bar (samples are of course mandatory!). Everyone makes their own giant chocolate buttons, fresh cream truffles and milk chocolate fudge using organic chocolate and oodles of decorations.

We very much focus on playing with chocolate and getting guests to release their inner child!

How did you start this business and why?

While I was studying at the Slade School of Art, I had a Dutch boyfriend so we spent a lot of time in Amsterdam. During one of our visits, he took me to a chocolate workshop held at the back of a tiny chocolate shop. The workshop was brilliant and I realised how interesting (and fun!) it was making chocolate from scratch. 

That’s where the initial idea for MyChocolate came from and I realised the workshops would also be great for corporate events and parties.

When we got back from Amsterdam, I left university and used part of my student loan to set up the company. 

At first I ran the workshops from my flat in West London but after a few years, MyChocolate really took off and I now rent a large kitchen space in Farrington. 

MyChocolate has now been in business for 10 years. 

You have several different types of parties and workshops that you offer.  Could you briefly explain to our readers what these different types are?

As well as the Original Chocolate Making workshop, where everyone samples flavoured chocolates, learns how chocolate is made and makes their own handmade treats, we run the following events:

Choc-tails
This is definitely a favourite amongst hen parties. The workshop includes a chocolate vodka martini and truffle making from raw ingredients. 

Apprentice Challenge 
Our Apprentice Chocolate Challenge is the most popular workshops for corporate clients. Each team receives a challenge to make a chocolate product and advert for a certain market niche. 

Luxury Chocolate 
This is the ultimate gift experience! During the three hours event, you get to sample matching wines and flavoured truffles, make exotic flavoured chocolate slabs and blend chocolate martini, all while enjoying a few glasses of Prosecco. 

Check out one of the My Chocolate Recipes here.

Of these various workshops and parties, what is your personal favorite to work on?

The Luxury Chocolate Making! Our milk chocolate vodka martinis and gooey American style fudge recipes are amazing! 

Do you have a central location that you offer our workshops and parties at or do you travel to the individual customers?

We do both. 

We have our own workshop space in Farrington where most of the workshops are run and we work with lots of partner hotels across Central London, including the Hilton and The Zetter.

Most of the workshops we run are completely mobile so we often travel to company’s offices and people houses, especially when we run kids parties. 

What is the largest event you've run?

In the run up to Christmas, we run lots of office Christmas parties which are often for a few hundred people. 

I think the largest event we’ve run so far was for just over 500 people at the Ritz. We organised a ‘round the world’ chocolate making event. Each room was based on a different country with chocolates made using traditional flavours and ingredients from each country. 

Most of our readers are not in the UK so what might "My Chocolate" offer to the non-UK reader?

The workshops are based in the UK (London, Manchester and Brighton) but we are actually just about to launch a chocolate making kit, which is an at home version of our chocolate workshop. This can be posted around the world. Watch this space!

I hope when you get that kit ready you'll consider sending us one to test and write about here on The Chocolate Cult.

Hannah, are there any final thoughts you'd like to leave our readers with?

People often don’t realise how easy it is to make flavoured chocolate bars. 

Melt a bowl of chocolate and stir in spices, herbs or cooking essential oils. Pour the melted chocolate on to a flat surface covered in baking paper. Use a spatula to evenly spread the chocolate so it’s a cm thick. Once the chocolate has set, break the slab into pieces. 

Brothers and Sisters, please do leave a few comments for Hannah about our interview today.

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