For more information visit the Kickstarter page here: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1364831213/rejoice-in-positivity-with-forte-chocolates/description
Life is full of everyday hiccups and even the occasional gut punch, but whether or not these sidesteps effect our outlook in life is up to us. Our mission is to Celebrate Life with Chocolate so naturally we choose to look at the upside of any situation. Though the electrical and smoke damage caused our retail store to close temporarily for repairs, we are using the extra time to re-design our chocolate bars. Show your support by helping us reach our goal and making this Kickstarter a delicious success! You will be rewarded with good karmic vibes and of course, yummy chocolate!
THE PROJECT: New Chocolate Bar Packaging
In the beginning, we were so focused on the chocolate, we thought of the wrapper as something of an afterthought. We simply went down to Kinkos and printed off some color labels and wrapped them around the bar. Over time this evolved into a professionally produced, 4-color process on a high-quality, laminated paper stock wrapper that we lovingly folded around all edges of the bar by hand. While we have gotten quite fast at wrapper origami, we frequently produce more bars then our wrappers can wrap! To save our staff from the devastations of carpal tunnel and to keep up with public demand for our bars, the need for new packaging is long overdue. Every problem holds an opportunity and we believe that is the perfect time to rectify this issue! We will be releasing 2 new flavors as well!
Our new packaging is an envelope design that will allow for easy and efficient packaging of our bars without the need for a machine. But solving just one problem was not enough! We have added a slit to the back as well so the bars can be opened and closed as often as desired. This is not possible with our current wrappers as there is no way to re-close the package once the paper is ripped. In addition, the envelope design gives a natural tapered edge that surrounds the bar and serves as a bult-in cushion, which reduces breakage in shipping. Nice! Don’t worry, all of the bars will still have an inner wrapper of paperbacked foil to preserve the flavor and for those who enjoy the double reveal.
WHERE THE MONEY GOES:
Packaging for 12 flavor varieties (2 of which are new flavors: Honey in Milk & one that is a Surprise Mystery flavor) and case boxes used to ship and display the packaged bars.
$14,000 STRETCH GOAL: Custom Bar Molds
Ideally, we would like to customize our actual chocolate bars as well as the packaging to give a more complete Forte experience. When designing the new molds, we want to increase the size of our bar from 45 grams to 50 or 60 grams as we often find that our customers want the bars to have a few more bites and for each bite to be the same thickness. While we like our current molds for they are beautiful and easy to work with, other chocolate companies may be using the same mold. This can lead to confusion in the marketplace. The current molds also have a flaw in the mold that look like a kiss mark left on a sparkling window. While we enjoy a romantic peck on the cheek (or window), when you pay attention to every detail like we do, it can be frustrating to see a flaw that you can not fix.
WHERE THE MONEY GOES:
Design, testing, and purchasing of custom chocolate bar molds. If possible, we would like to purchase enough molds to have dedicated white/milk chocolate molds and dedicated dark chocolate molds.
A LITTLE BIT ABOUT US…
In 2006 while in the Baking & Pastry program at the Art Institute of Seattle, Chef Karen Neugebauer fell in love with the magical transformation of chocolate and cream into what she believes is the prettiest emulsion of all time. This emulsion is known as a Ganache, the delicious soft inside of a truffle. Just a few short months later, Karen started Forte Chocolates and dedicated her life to all the wonders of chocolate.
The mission: “To Celebrate Life thru Chocolate!” Loving where long sentences can take you, she added “We do this by exploring the world of chocolate artistry by bringing together chocolate lovers of all ages who share an insatiable desire to create, discover, admire, have fun with, and of course, consume true artisan-quality chocolates.”
Over the years Karen grew to become a Master Chocolatier and is now at the forefront of the Seattle artisan chocolate scene. She continues to follow the true artisan mindset — crafting every piece lovingly by hand. Her passion for the craft and her ability to cultivate cunningly balanced flavor profiles have led to earning numerous international awards and being ranked among the nation’s best chocolatiers. To see the long list of awards click here.
AWARD WINNING CHOCOLATE BARS
Select your pledge reward bars from the following:
*** NEW *** MYSTERY FLAVOR – We are developing a new surprise flavor! Kickstarter supporters will be the first to get it. The new flavor will be released to the public in March of 2018
LEMON PEPPER – Zest and lemon oil from fresh Meyer Lemons are paired with coarse ground black peppercorns and seductively rich white chocolate for a rejuvenating culinary delight
ROSEMARY SEA SALT – The classic pairing of fresh Organic Rosemary with Sea Salt from the coast of Portugal blends beautifully with our silky smooth white chocolate. A perfect marriage of savory and sweet!
*** NEW *** HONEY IN MILK – A mix of locally sourced honeys have been artfully paired with a dark milk chocolate blend to create a full flavored bar with a smooth honey finish that is hard to resist
MILK SEA SALT – Silky smooth milk chocolate is brought to a new level of enjoyment with the pairing of Flor de Sal sea salt. A classic salty sweet delight!
BALSAMIC VINEGAR – Our favorite twenty year, barrel aged balsamic vinegar from Modena, Italy, lends a perfect intensity of flavor that sets this white chocolate bar apart! Try placing a piece of this bar on your pan-fried steak for a quick deglaze sauce. Yum!
FORTUNATO #4 – Pure Naçional, a rare and exotic cacao long thought to be extinct, has been re-discovered growing in a remote region of the Peruvian Andes. This smooth 68% Grand Cru, has layered flavors, with citrus, coffee and spice notes emerging just after the natural nutty aroma and flavors that are indicative of prized porcelain beans
WHITE CLOUD – Our silky smooth white artisan chocolate is skillfully blended to bring out the subtle natural vanilla and light caramel notes found within.
MILK LOVE – Our rich milk chocolate is as sensual as milk chocolate can get. The extra high percentage of cocoa butter in this milk chocolate makes for a silky mouth feel that sets it high above most other milk chocolates on the market today.
71% DARK – Our extra dark 71% chocolate has a powerful aroma and a full-bodied taste that will knock you off your feet. The purest dark chocolate connoisseur will thank you and keep coming back for more.
AZTEC SOUL – Experience the age-old Aztec tradition of mixing dark chocolate with ground chili pepper seeds. We have created a secret blend of roasted chili peppers (including jalapeno and chipotle) and mixed them with our ever smooth 71% extra dark chocolate for a soulful experience that will keep you coming back for more Note: This bar focuses on the remarkable flavor combination of chili peppers and chocolate rather than on burning your palette.
ESPRESSO WHITE SWAN – We have mixed our silky smooth white chocolate with espresso by Black Swan Coffee Roasting Co. This extremely fine-ground espresso is made from a wonderful blend of Central and South American coffees that have been roasted in a Viennese style reminiscent of a young feather-light swan
ORANGE JAZZ – We infused our rich 64% dark chocolate with orange essence to create a jazzy melody that will amuse and delight your senses
Risks and challenges
What is a new venture without some inherent risks? Have you ever heard of one? While we can not predict every outcome possibility, there are a few risks that we know of:
1) We are human and humans can sometimes make mistakes. Shocking! The packaging may have an error or we may have mis-judged something. Rest assured, we have put a lot of effort into this project and we do not foresee any major problems at this time.
2) If we are able to do custom molds, they could be more expensive and/or take longer to deliver than we anticipate. If the molds are delayed, we will contact you and give you the option of getting the current bars on time (in January) or wait for the new bars in the new packaging.
3) Chocolate shortages may happen as this is an agricultural product and demands ever growing, especially for artisan quality chocolate!
4) The campaign can be so wildly successful that we have much more demand than expected. If delays are caused by larger volume, then rewards will be filled on a first pledge, first served basis whenever possible. We have set both time and quantity limits to help with this.