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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, August 4, 2017 - Volume 45 Issue 31
Sweet spot: Local, independent company indi Chocolate opens its new store at Pike Place MarketFront
Arts & Entertainment
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Sweet spot: Local, independent company indi Chocolate opens its new store at Pike Place MarketFront

by Albert Rodriguez - SGN A&E Writer

Chocolate is always a good idea. And when you can buy it locally, days or hours after it was made from scratch then it's worth the splurge. indi Chocolate, founded by former stay-at-home-mom Erin Andrews in 2010, initially launched as a chocolate-based line of skin and body care products, but gradually expanded into edible goods, primarily bean-to-bar chocolate in small batches. Last week, the Seattle company opened the doors to its first physical store, a 495 square foot space at the new Pike Place MarketFront, adjacent to another local business, Honest Biscuits.

A four-sided counter allows customers to peruse a selection of sweet treats for purchase, from handmade caramels to cocoa-dusted marshmallows to 72% dark chocolate bars, which represents a very high level of cacao and less use of sugar compared to other chocolate; basically you're getting a top quality product. Guests can also order a variety of espresso and cocoa beverages, both hot and chilled, in addition to pre-packaged sandwiches and salads, plus a fresh assortment of baked muffins, croissants and cookies.

Gift items, from spice rubs to lip balm to lotions and creams to cacao infusion kits, are available for purchase on store shelves across from the ordering area, while to the side of the counter is the roasting space where all the magic happens. After the cocoa beans are received from carefully selected farmers around the world, assuring the best beans possible, they are cleaned, roasted and graded, all in-house before the blended cacao is combined with just two ingredients, cacao butter and a little bit of sugar. The blending process, also done on the premises, takes 25 hours to complete resulting in a decadent, creamy, gorgeous dark brown liquid, otherwise known as chocolate. It's similar to going into a coffee roastery, or even a microbrewery, where the actual product is being made in front of you, as you eat or drink at a few tables and chairs situated inside indi's charming shop. You can also walk out to the MarketFront's observation deck and enjoy your treats there with panoramic views of the Sound.

Besides good chocolate - to which I can attest, as I couldn't leave the store without indulging in a few samples - indi also offers a Bean-to-Bar Chocolate Making Class and Chocolate Mixology Class, in partnership with Eat Seattle tour company, as well as Chocolate Palate Training and private group classes or special events.

For any chocolate lover, or if you happen to be visiting the Pike Place Market with friends or family, stop by indi Chocolate at the MarketFront, located on the north end (ask an attendant, if you're unable to find it). For more information, go to www.indichocolate.com.

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