Tag Archives: handcrafted

Charlotte Stone

Charlotte Stone hasn’t skipped a beat after graduating from FIDM LA. Two weeks post graduation she was on a plane to Italy to make samples in Tuscany and the rest is history. Stepping out on her own under her self-named label, she is a unique talent. You need not 5 minutes scrolling her Tumbr to instantly understand the Charlotte Stone POV on the world; Sun kissed and beautifully soled. She is the ultimate intersection of impeccable craftsmanship, minimalism and fun. I mean her website is titled, “I’d rather be surfing”. Now that’s the kind of girl I can get behind!

Canadian born; yet another reason to love her, she’s always known she wanted to design shoes. Pulling inspiration from a library of well used and ever growing reference binders filled with magazine clippings, editorials and vintage inspiration, she knows she’s onto something when she starts to see her color combos and shapes over and over again in the world around her.  I know she’s onto something because when I go to her site I have what I like to call, purchase paralysis. Meaning I want everything and don’t quite know where to start! Currently going on is her summer sample sale. Act quickly and enjoy!

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The American Pioneers of Chocolate

So if you know me, you know I love chocolate. Well, not just any chocolate, dark, rich, expensive, fancy chocolately goodness. I am sort of a rookie chocolate connoisseur or to be honest, snob. At work we actually have a chocolate drawer, because there is nothing that can turn a bad meeting or crummy day around like a piece of artisan chocolate. And my house, well, it’s fully stocked at all times.

Anyways, there’s a lot of great chocolate out there that definitely does the trick but when I came across Mast Brothers, it was chocolate at a whole new level; It was love at first sight.

I first stumbled upon Mast Brothers Chocolate while in New York last winter. It was beautifully displayed in Saturdays Surf NYC next to their espresso machine. I know, surfing, chocolate and espresso all wrapped up into one store in NY, amazing, but that’s a whole other post in its self, I digress. There it was, sitting beautifully on the edge of the gorgeous wood countertop, lined up in rows looking sophisticated, fun, bold and simple all at the same time. See the thing about Mast Brothers is before you even bite into the handcrafted chocolate you’ve been completely won over by the absolutely stunning design of the packaging. It’s simple, unique and gorgeous. Then there’s of course, the chocolate inside.

There is a reason why founders, Michael and Rick say they’re handcrafting the world’s greatest chocolate, because it’s true. They not only use single estate and single origin chocolate from around the world, they partnering with the best farms and organizations to create truly unique chocolate blends. From Stumptown Coffee to Main Sea Salt to Crown Maple Syrup, Mast Brothers is truly redefining the chocolate pairing. With no vanilla, added sugar, soy lecithin or any kind of emulsifier their chocolate is as pure as it can be. Using a different roasting profile for each bean and roasting in small batches by hand in their Brooklyn factory, the Mast Brothers are redefining the way chocolate is produced and the world is responding. Distributed to the best artisan markets, boutique stores, top restaurants and pastry chefs (Per Se and French Laundry to name a few) Mast Brother’s Chocolate has created a new “bean-to-bar” category that is taking chocolate the next level.

They’ve also taken their talent a step further and published a book about their story, philosophy to handcrafting chocolate and all the wonderful things you can make with it. From brownies to steak rubs, it’s a must buy.

If you’re in PDX you can buy at Oso Market + Bar, or check out their site for online purchases. Thank goodness for e-commerce!

And next time I’m in Manhattan, I’m definitely going to try and make the trip to Williamsburg to hit up their factory store and if I’m lucky maybe even time it right for one of their Chocolate Factory Dinners. My mouth is watering already…

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