Iron Bean recently released it's first chocolate creation, Peanut Butter Pretzel Chocolate Coffee Bark. This bark is made with Iron Bean's Cast Iron roast and Bittersweet Candy Co's delicious chocolate. This wicked good concoction is a blend of two amazing companies coming together to make something magical.
Bittersweet Candy Co is owned and run by Heather Lent, chocolate connoisseur. Heather is a master of her craft and makes so many delightful chocolate creations. I love this collaboration not only for the amazing chocolate but it also makes me happy to see small businesses supporting each other. I wanted to take a moment to ask Heather some questions so we could all get to know her and her company a bit better. The coffee bark came out so good! If you haven't tried it make sure you grab some while it's still in stock! I hope we see many more tasty chocolate / coffee creations in the future. It's only the beginning of great things to come!
How did you get started making chocolate?
About 20 years ago I started making chocolate for my coworkers as Christmas gifts. One year I made everyone peppermint bark in little mason jars and they loved it. The next year some of them asked if they could buy some peppermint bark from me because they liked it better than anything they could find in stores. So that year I made peppermint bark for my coworkers to give as gifts. After that Christmas season I decided I wanted to do this for real. It has been a wacky chocolate covered roller coaster ever since then.
I hear you used to have a candy store?
I did. When I first started my business it was out of my house. Then I decided to open a candy store in Poughkeepsie where I was living. It was a very fun high energy store that the whole neighborhood loved. You couldn’t help but smile when you walked in. I sold my own chocolates, old-school candies, items made by local crafts people and funny retail items. In addition to selling candy we held many events there. Even earning the candy store the nickname Club Bittersweet.
Unfortunately after three years in business the store was barely scraping by. Rent in that neighborhood was very high and chocolate is a seasonal item. I made the decision to close the store and move upstate to be closer to my very large family.
Hopefully one day there will be another candy store. It was a lot of fun!
How did you find Iron Bean Coffee?
I found IBCC the best way you can, through their fans. I started noticing several of my friends talking about this new coffee company that I had not heard of on FB. When I went to their website I was completely surprised to find out that though they live in Ohio, they are from Schenectady where I live. After following them for a while I knew they were my type of people.
How is it working with Fred and Chanell?
It’s awesome. The first time we spoke we were on the phone for over an hour. They have such a great energy and they are really the perfect balance for each other. I am super excited for our future and all of the fun ideas we are going to come up with for you guys to eat
Are you a coffee drinker?
Yes and no. I didn’t even have my 1st cup of coffee until my 40th birthday weekend a few years ago in New Orleans. I had delicious chicory coffee from the very famous Café du Monde, and I loved it. Since then I have enjoyed coffee more and more to the point of actually buying myself a French press for the house. It was really interesting getting my sample pack from IBCC and getting to compare all of the different beans and roasts. I still haven’t decided which one is my favorite. Maybe Cast Iron?
What’s your favorite chocolate creation that you’ve made?
That is a very good and very hard question. I love so many of the different flavors that I have come up with on my own and that people like Fred and Chanel have inspired. I think I’m going to have to go old-school on this one and say peppermint bark. As delicious as it is I think it’s mostly for sentimental reasons . It was the chocolate that started it all.