The Chocolate Life

Discover Chocolate and Live La Vida Cocoa!

Since 2008 -- THE on-line community for chocophiles, and aspiring chocophiles, to explore, learn, and share.


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Latest Activity

John Duxbury replied to John Duxbury's discussion For Sale: Martellato Guitar Cutter in the group Classifieds - For Sale or Wanted
"Thanks Alek.  I have to take the guitar back to my house to use the scale.  I'll let you know the weight in the morning.  John"
1 hour ago
Alek Dabo replied to John Duxbury's discussion For Sale: Martellato Guitar Cutter in the group Classifieds - For Sale or Wanted
"It means Diplomatic Post Office  It is a Us address with a us zip and a US s postal tariff, but it needs to be well wrapped because it in fact goes abroad.  That's all.  We have a us account and will pay via transfer on…"
3 hours ago
John Duxbury replied to John Duxbury's discussion For Sale: Martellato Guitar Cutter in the group Classifieds - For Sale or Wanted
"Thanks Alek.  I'm not sure what a "dpo address" is.  Can you clarify?  John"
3 hours ago
Alek Dabo replied to John Duxbury's discussion For Sale: Martellato Guitar Cutter in the group Classifieds - For Sale or Wanted
"Hi John I am interested. How much would the shipping weight be?  It would be sent to a dpo address.  Thank you.  Alek "
5 hours ago
Chocolate Lover added a discussion to the group Classifieds - For Sale or Wanted
6 hours ago
Michael Jones added a discussion to the group Classifieds - For Sale or Wanted

For Sale: Selmi Plus Tempering Machine

Two year-old Selmi Plus tempering machine purchased new from Tomric for $19,500.  Comes with heated shaker table.  This is the smallest machine that you can buy that is compatible with an enrober.Still works like new!It is a 220v 3-phase power hookup.More information on the machine (link is to EX machine): machine in located in a suburb of…See More
6 hours ago
Michael Jones joined Clay Gordon's group

Classifieds - For Sale or Wanted

This is the group where ChocolateLife members can A) Advertise USED equipment for sale to other ChocolateLife members. B) Let other ChocolateLife members know that they are looking for equipment (new or used).See More
6 hours ago
John Duxbury updated their profile
7 hours ago
John Duxbury added a discussion to the group Classifieds - For Sale or Wanted

For Sale: Martellato Guitar Cutter

Hello All.  I purchased this Martellato guitar at the end of last season (used), and have not had enough volume to justify keeping it - I just use a caramel cutter and chefs knife.  I haven't used the guitar at all.  The 22.5 frame is fully wired but the other 2 frames need some wires replaced.  There are also 6 tuning pegs that are missing in total (never received them when I purchased the unit).  There's a small dent on the edge of the pick-up tray that I don't think will hamper the ganache…See More
8 hours ago
Profile IconBret Wengeler, bahira Hossam galal and Ullekha Tallam joined The Chocolate Life
10 hours ago
Courtney montgomery replied to Courtney montgomery's discussion wanted cocoa butter or coconut oil in the group Classifieds - For Sale or Wanted
"Oh thank you so much.that does help."
11 hours ago
Shalini Latour replied to Jody Dotson's discussion Profit Margins/Mark-up for Retail, Wholesale, Distribution? Payroll? in the group Startup Central
"HiMy cost of goods is a bit higher then yours 30 to 35%. I don't really a labor break down because I am still a tiny company and do most everything my self. I do around 40% off suggested retail for wholesale orders. It seams to work for most of…"
11 hours ago
Mark Allan replied to Jody Dotson's discussion Profit Margins/Mark-up for Retail, Wholesale, Distribution? Payroll? in the group Startup Central
"You've been in it a lot longer than me, and I cannot say we are in the same boat. I am an American living in Honduras, running an orphanage. I buy Honduran cocoa and make chocolate with it, something even the citizens have not seen. This…"
12 hours ago
Jody Dotson added a discussion to the group Startup Central

Profit Margins/Mark-up for Retail, Wholesale, Distribution? Payroll?

Hi there,I'm wondering if anyone has come across industry standards in chocolate for profit margins for retail, wholesale and distribution?Also, is anyone willing to share info on labor/cost of goods percentages?Our labor is hovering around 40%. Is that normal? High? Cost of goods is between 25% and 30%.We're a high-end chocolate shop that has been in business for 10 years. We've been primarily retail (over 90% of our sales) in a tourist area where the season only lasts 3 months of the year. We…See More
12 hours ago
Jody Dotson joined Clay Gordon's group

Startup Central

Are you looking to start a chocolate business? Want to talk to others who've been there or done that - or have you been there and done it and want to share with others? This is the place to discuss it.See More
12 hours ago
Jeremy Rushane replied to Courtney montgomery's discussion wanted cocoa butter or coconut oil in the group Classifieds - For Sale or Wanted
"I get my coconut oil from ebay.... I cut my dark chocolate with it to make a hard shell ice cream coating.. Works like a charm! I use Robins Nest Organic coconut oil. The price is very good and some of the best quality available. Hope this…"
17 hours ago
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The DiscoverChoc Daily is out! Stories via @antonie @daintreeestates @taradublinrocks

The DiscoverChoc Daily

The DiscoverChoc Daily, by Clay Gordon: updated automatically with a curated selection of articles, blog posts, videos and photos.

Facebook20 hours ago · Reply
Kristofer Kalas and Domantas Uzpalis are now friends
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Support TheChocolateLife by Taking Advantage of Special Member Offers:

Support TheChocolateLife when you purchase products from the following companies:

FBM (tempering machines, dropping machines, and the Kleego line)
Pietro Berto (stone 2- and 3-roll mills from Italy)
Delani Trading
(small universals and pre-grinders)
Packint (turnkey artisan/craft chocolate production lines)
Chocovision, and CocoaTown
 (chocolate machines)
Micelli (custom polycarbonate chocolate molds)
Tomric (Selmi tempering machines and more)
Truffly Made (silicon molds for ganaches, caramels, and more)
Amano Chocolate (bulk chocolate for chefs)

Visit the main Shop page.


Couverture suitable for India climate

Started by Arti Jain in Tasting Notes yesterday. 0 Replies

Hi,Please help me in understanding  wheather couverture chocolate is suitable for Indian climate ?When it will be sent across at various places through courier will it be able to withstand the Indian heat ?What should be done to avoid any sort of…Continue

Difficulty tempering my own chocolate in Chocovision Revolation x3210

Started by kyle wilson in Micro-Batch "Homebrew" Chocolate. Last reply by kyle wilson yesterday. 2 Replies

Hey,I am a new member to this site hoping someone may be able to help me with tempering my chocolate, I roast myself.I am able to temper it perfectly by hand, but for some reason I can't seem to get it right with the chocovision machine. The…Continue

Any recipe for hot thick chocolate preparation to be used in a chocolate machine at a market stall?

Started by Porfyra in Recipes. Last reply by Dan Lantonio on Tuesday. 1 Reply

Hi all, I 've seen a similar post in this forum but it didn't quite answer my question so I would appreciate any advice from you. We are planning to have a stand at a market selling thick hot chocolate using our new machine (Camurri). The issue is…Continue

Fbm Prima

Started by Calum in Tech Help. Last reply by Calum on Tuesday. 4 Replies

Hi folks,I have been offered an ex display Prima and enrober attachment at a reasonable price.The machine has less than 5 hours working time so it's essentially new. This would be our first continuous temperer and enrober, we currently have the old…Continue

Cocoatown ECGC-12SLTA Issues

Started by Evan Langendorf in Tech Help. Last reply by Evan Langendorf on Monday. 8 Replies

Hello Chocolatelifers!We have now been working with the cocoatown unit for about 8 months and as production increased we have recently run into some problems. I am wondering if these are common and if they have been experienced by anyone else or if…Continue

What the Chocolate Industry Needs is A $100 Bar of Chocolate

Started by Clay Gordon in Opinion. Last reply by Annmarie Kostyk on Monday. 85 Replies

When I was in London a couple of weeks ago speaking at the Academy of Chocolate conference, I had the great privilege of being the last speaker of the day. This enabled me to pay attention to what everybody else was saying and present a summary of…Continue

praline finish

Started by Alan Caldwell in Tips, Tricks, and Techniques on Sunday. 0 Replies

attached are 2 photosIm getting some real nice sheen on the praline, but theres also swirlwhat causes the swirl?any help appreciatedcheersalan Continue


Started by Meira Neggaz in Tips, Tricks, and Techniques. Last reply by Domantas Uzpalis Nov 14. 10 Replies

I would like to learn if there is a standard recipe for panning.If any of you chocolatier would give me any instruction how panning works?Continue

Direct Couverture Sourcing

Started by Arti Jain in Opinion Nov 13. 0 Replies

Hi ,I am looking to source couverture directly from manufacturers as I am intending to start my chocolate business in India.It would be very helpful if someone can help me getting in touch with them.Normally big companies don't entertain small/new…Continue

Microwave Temper Problem

Started by Bryan in Tech Help. Last reply by Bryan Nov 12. 9 Replies

I couldnt find a piece to my temper machine so I had to use the microwave.  I put a cup of chocolate pieces in a microwave safe bowl then heated it to 118 degree in short 15-20 second bursts.  I then let the chocolate cool to 95 degrees while…Continue


2014 Travel and Presentation Schedule

October 3-5: NW Chocolate Festival (Seattle, WA - on the FBM stand))

October 16: Academy of Chocolate (London - presenting)

October 18: The Chocolate Show (London - presenting)

October 25: Origin Chocolate conference (Amsterdam - presenting)

October 31-Nov 1: Salon du Chocolat (Paris - visiting)

Donations always welcome to help cover the costs of international travel and to support the work required to keep TheChocolateLife running. [Note: PayPal account is in the name of WebWideGuides.]

Blog Posts

Root Chocolate - Chocolate Factory

Posted by Landen Zernickow on November 18, 2014 at 7:18pm 0 Comments

Ever wonder what the Root Chocolate Factory looks like? Check it out!

It’s been about 8 months since we starting playing around with chocolate. And in that time, we’ve collected quite a bit of equipment, tools, and ingredients that now fill an entire area of our apartment. We like to call that area our Chocolate Factory.

We started with just a bag of cocoa beans from the …


Root Chocolate - chocolate certifications and labels

Posted by Landen Zernickow on November 14, 2014 at 12:48am 0 Comments



"Single Origin"

"Fair Trade"

"Rainforest Alliance"


"Direct Trade"

What do these all mean and which ones should you pay attention to when you're choosing your chocolate? Good question! Some relate to labor practices, others relate to the environmental circumstances surrounding the farming.

Here at Root Chocolate, we've discussed where cacao farmers fit… Continue

Root Chocolate - Venezuelan Batch & Bloom Challenge

Posted by Landen Zernickow on November 7, 2014 at 12:23pm 0 Comments

Last week, we made a batch of chocolate from some very special beans. They are Carupano Corona from Venezuela, 2014. The Chocolate Alchemist describes them as “Criollo/Trinitario with clove and soft fruity high notes and very low bitterness.”

And the exciting part – John Nanci roasted them right there in his workshop with us watching (and smelling) on! In his homemade roaster with temperature gauges inside the drum roaster and in the oven itself, these beans smelled amazing. I’ll…


Root Chocolate - New Ingredients

Posted by Landen Zernickow on November 3, 2014 at 7:42pm 0 Comments

One of the areas of innovation in chocolate where we have not yet ventured is that of ingredients. Well, that’s not totally true… When we first started out, we tried a bacon batch, but we added way too much bacon. Another time, we tried a salted chocolate batch, but we added way too much salt. (Noticing a trend?) We’ve strayed away from new ingredients since then.

However, our visit to John Nanci in …


Healthy Halloween with Root Chocolate

Posted by Landen Zernickow on October 31, 2014 at 6:45pm 0 Comments

Happy Halloween!

You may expect a rant about Halloween chocolate or a self-righteous monograph about how I don’t eat junk candy. But, to be honest, I love candy corn and Swedish fish and even Milky Way bars! We don’t eat too many sweets, but every once in a while, the candies from my childhood provide that comfort of sugary deliciousness.

Our apartment complex didn’t get any trick-or-treaters last year, so we don’t expect many (if at all) this year either. Still, we have our…



Posted by Alufoil Products Pvt Ltd. on October 31, 2014 at 3:25am 0 Comments

We supply to many multinational chocolate companies, as well as to a number of independent manufacturers all over the world.

Our company's policy assures high quality products at competitive prices…


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