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it was an honour just to be nominated

This past Saturday, the awards ceremony for the International Chocolate Awards for the Americas took place. DWN had three products chosen as jury selections as potential award contenders, however, we did not end up winning. As a small chocolate maker located in a small town, these types of awards are a great promotional tool because it shows that great craftsmanship can be found anywhere regardless of production size and operational budget. As a solo entrepreneur who shows up every day to continue producing and improving, it is nice to occasionally be recognized by one's peers.However, we can't let awards affect our ego too much because they are not the only indicator of taste. For the past two years, we have submitted...

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chocolate meant to evoke a feeling or emotion

I was inspired to write this newsletter after reading this passage from Mackenzie Rivers (Map Chocolate) when she talks about creating inclusion bars; "It’s about taking an idea, deconstructing that idea (a favorite food, a beloved food memory, a riff on a cuisine or dish) and figuring out how to get that idea into chocolate form."A lot of people ask where I get my ideas and it is usually one of two inspirations; ingredients or memory. I worked for several years as a pastry chef for one of Canada's farm-to table pioneers, which strengthened my determination to work with local ingredients. This is a value that I bring to the chocolate that I make whether it is a fresh ingredient from the...

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Entrepreneur of the Year

I was honoured last week to receive the Entrepreneur of the Year Award from the Orillia District Chamber of Commerce. The Business Achievement Awards are held every year to recognize and celebrate the contributions and accomplishments of the local business community. In my acceptance speech I mentioned that the journey of an entrepreneur is often lonely and there are many frustrations. However, I show up every day and continue moving forward. I am happy to have received this award because I have worked hard to create DWN Chocolate and will continue to work hard to keep DWN growing in Simcoe County with more sweet treats. Thank you to everyone who voted for me and to the Orillia District Chamber of Commerce.

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2nd annual Easter colouring contest

DWN Craft Chocolatier is launching its first ever Easter Egg Colouring Contest. This is your chance to see your own design recreated as a chocolate egg. Two winners will be chosen and will be given two replicas of their design in the form of a chocolate Easter egg – one egg to enjoy themselves and another to spread the chocolate love. From March 16 to April 2, 2022, everyone is encouraged to submit their egg design. Download the colouring sheet or pick one up in store at 11 Mississaga St E, Orillia. Submissions can be returned to the store or emailed to The DWN retail store is open Wednesday to Saturday from 11am to 5pm. This contest is open to all ages...

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how to categorize the DWN fruit bars

The last blog post addressed the topic of white chocolate and it was determined that white chocolate is 'real' chocolate when it contains cocoa butter because it is a bi-product of the cocoa bean.The math: white chocolate = cocoa butter + sugar + milk powder  The creation of fruit-based chocolate requires similar math, but often the milk powder can be omitted to create dairy-free chocolate. I love making fruit bars because the fruit powder does the majority of the heavy lifting in the flavour and colour of the chocolate bar. fruit chocolate = cocoa butter + sugar + freeze-dried fruit powder I live in Canada so the access to freshly grown fruit is limited to the warmer months. To ensure that we have...

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