JACOBEAN Craft Chocolate: A Sweet Escape

Embracing the bean-to-bar philosophy of chocolate making, JACOBEAN Craft Chocolate proudly embraces Newfoundlandia with hefty doses of TLC


Darryl Pike has dedicated his entire life and career to the promotion of Newfoundland and Labrador. An entrepreneur and self-described engineer at heart, Pike’s latest venture has moved him into the ever-growing realm of craft chocolate, embracing the bean-to-bar philosophy of chocolate making that has made JACOBEAN Craft Chocolate a popular, and mouthwatering name across the province.

Hand crafted goods 

“I get an idea and I get a passion for it, I just research it,” shared Pike, known for his popular local business Saltwater Pewter. “I go right to the very last stone and turn over the information that I need.”

Pike conceived of the idea for JACOBEAN after researching the growing chocolate renaissance globally, the latest in the line of artisanal, hand crafted goods that have ballooned in popularity including craft beers, wines and cheeses. The idea of crafting his own chocolate, working directly with cacaco beans would seem outlandish decades prior. 

“I began researching bean-to-bar and I said ‘Oh my God, you can make your own chocolate’. I thought this was reserved for larger corporations. And then I heard about the bean-to-bar movement that’s going around the world,” Pike explained. 

“You know how coffee and cheese and wine and beer have all gone through the renaissance? Now we all know what a nice beer tastes like. We all know what a nice coffee tastes like. The chocolate industry right now is probably in the 20 per cent mark on the profile of education and development in the bean-to-bar industry. And in ten years time people will understand the difference.”

Delectable products

JACOBEAN Craft Chocolate celebrated their one year anniversary on August 1st, with the company currently producing 30 delectable products and counting. And while savouring the sweeter side of a booming business is gravy, educating the public on the true taste of chocolate is one of the ultimate payoffs for Pike and co. 

“A big part of the sale is education because people don’t know what it is,” Pike says. “People stick around and taste the chocolate and love it. It’s not a gobble chocolate, it’s a tasting saver. They taste and they let it melt on their tongue and they say ‘Oh my God’. There is a complete roller coaster taste profile.”

JACOBEANs 20 day small batch process produces 10-60 pounds of chocolate per cycle. Only the finest local ingredients are sourced, a company mandate to feature the very best of what this island has to offer. 

From Newfoundland roasted coffee beans combined with Ucayali River cacao, to a dark chocolate raspberry complete with fresh pieces of organic wild NL berries and a melt on the tongue Newfoundland sea salt bar, it’s a marriage of quality, time and carefully sourced ingredients that results in pure decadence that will delight even the most jaded pallet. 

Embracing local

“My inspiration comes from Newfoundland,” shares Pike. “I’m a Newfoundlander born and bred and I like to think of myself as someone who promotes our culture and heritage. From the Newfoundland words on my key chains to the codfish which was my very first design up to the I Heart NL logo in my key chain to my chocolate bars. My chocolate bars now include berries, as many as I can. 

“I focus on local ingredients, local people, local, local, local. How privileged are we to wake up every day and drive anywhere in St. John’s and see the Narrows and see the ocean and see trees … We don’t realize how good we have it here.”

Over a year in and JACOBEAN is fast becoming a household name, with those here and abroad embracing a more sophisticated chocolate made with the finest care and hefty helpings of TLC. It’s not work if you love what you do, and providing a sweet escape for chocolate lovers across the island and beyond is the ultimate payoff for all hands. 

“I know it’s hard but it’s not work,” Pike says with a smile. “It’s like saying to someone who surfs all day that you’ve got to come in. No, no, no, no I’m surfing more. There’s bigger waves coming in and I’m staying tonight.”

JACOBEAN Craft Chocolate can be purchased online, in local shops and retailer boutiques worldwide, providing custom orders for corporate gifts, weddings and special occasions. For more visit jacobeanchocolate.com

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