The Best Craft Chocolate in America

small batch craft chocolates

The Best Craft Chocolate in America ~ these bean to bar chocolatiers are flourishing in cities all over the US using ethically sourced, single origin, organic cacao to make the most amazing small batch chocolate. You’ll find everything from cocoa powder and nibs to unique bars and truffles  ~ bravo!

best craft chocolate pin

Used to be you had to go to Europe for fine chocolates…not anymore. Artisan chocolate has come a long way in America in the last couple of decades, and now there are more choices than ever when it comes to truly luxurious, unique, and ethical sources for small-batch chocolate for eating, pairing, cooking, and baking. Here are some great examples, and, good news, you still have time to ship some to yourself, or your sweetie, in time for Valentine’s Day!

Note: many of these bespoke chocolate companies offer tasting tours of their facilities, if you live in the area, check their websites for details.

XOCOLATL ~ Atlanta Georgia

What makes it special ~ Xocolatl’s single-origin chocolate bars are made with just TWO ingredients – cacao and organic sugar. That’s about as pure as it gets, and also means that their single-origin bars are naturally vegan and gluten free. They also sell uniquely flavored versions using a variety of ingredients from blood oranges and olive oil to apple pie spices.

Xocolatl makes cacao herbal teas ~ made with the roasted cacao husks and nibs, how cool. 

Buy it ~ you can find XOCOLATL Chocolate products here.


Vosges Chocolate ~ Chicago Illinois

What makes it special ~ Vosges Chocolate in Chicago Illinois has some of the most unique flavors and most beautiful packaging I’ve come across. “Smoke and Salt” and “Manchego and Cherry” are some of the flavors I’m dying to try. They’re also known for their exquisite truffles and truly decadent gift collections.

Buy it ~ you can buy Vosges Chocolate products here.


Black Dinah gourmet truffles

Black Dinah Chocolatiers ~ Isle au Haut Maine

What makes it special ~ Black Dinah specializes in combining their high quality chocolate with the flavors of Maine ~ cream and butter from local farms, sea salt, rye whiskey, black currants, and other classic New England flavors make their way into their chocolate bars and candies. Their truffle boxes, like the “Maine Farmer’s Market” collection pictured above, make a fantastic gift.

Buy it ~ you can buy Black Dinah Chocolatiers products here.



Askinosie Chocolate ~ Springfield Missouri

What makes it special ~ Askinosie Chocolate was an early pioneer of fair trade practices and traceability in their chocolate production. They even provide a transparency report on their website with details of their contracts with trade partners and farmers in Ecuador, Tanzania, and the Philippines.

In addition to their high quality chocolate bars (dark chocolate with avocado and rosemary anyone?) Askinosie also sells bulk cocoa powder, nibs, and chocolate for the baker or cook who appreciates top notch chocolate. 

Buy it ~ you can buy Askinosie Chocolate products here.



Dandelion Chocolate ~ San Francisco California

What makes it special ~ Dandelion Chocolate also has a location in Tokyo, Japan. You can buy products from both locations on their website, including a special collection of bars made from the same beans but in the two locations, allowing you to compare the two results, how cool is that?

Dandelion Chocolate also sells bulk materials for making your very own chocolate at home. Intrigued, but not exactly sure how to turn a bag of roasted beans into the ultimate bar? Don’t worry, they’ve written the book.

Buy it ~ you can buy Dandelion Chocolate products here.



Fran's Sea Salt Caramels

Fran’s Chocolates ~ Seattle Washington

What makes it special ~ Fran Bigelow is the grand dame of fair trade chocolate, and has been credited for igniting the artisan chocolate renaissance in the US. Fran is famous for her salted caramels, and counts Ina Garten and the Obamas among her many fans. (Her packaging is gorgeous!)

Buy it ~ you can buy Fran’s Chocolates products here.



taza chocolate discs

Taza Chocolate ~ Somerville Massachusetts

What makes it special ~ If you’ve ever had a bar of Taza chocolate, you already know that the texture is unlike almost anything else out there. That’s because Taza chocolate is stone ground, like the traditional Mexican chocolate that inspired it. Less processing allows the flavors of the organic cacao to truly shine, and results in a slightly sandy texture that is almost like a cross between a chocolate bar and a shortbread cookie. Truly delicious!

Buy it ~ you can buy Taza Chocolate products here.  They are also available in many stores across the US.



chocolate dipped chiles

Kakawa Chocolate ~ Santa Fe New Mexico

What makes it special ~ Kakawa is known for its unique drinking chocolate elixers based on traditional Pre-Columbian, Mesoamerican, Mayan and Aztec drinking chocolates. Their chocolates and truffles reflect the flavors of the region, like agave, mezcal, prickly pear, green and red chili, and piñon. They even dip roasted New Mexico arbol chilis in  agave caramel and their 80% house blend dark chocolate.

Buy it ~ you can find Kakawa chocolate here



Garcia Nevett chocolate box

Garcia Nevett ~ Miami Florida

What makes it special ~ The brainchild of a pair of Venezuelan sisters now living in Miami, Garcia Nevett uses 100% single origin fair trade Venezuelan chocolate to make flavors like dulce de leche, Florida Keys sea salt, and passion fruit, with a truly tropical vibe. Garcia Nevett offers nationwide shipping – Next Day or 2 Day delivery from “steamy Miami” 🙂

Buy it ~ you can buy Garcia Nevett chocolate here



The Chocolate Conspiracy raw chocolate bar


The Chocolate Conspiracy ~   Salt Lake City Utah

What makes it special ~ The Chocolate Conspiracy is part of a thriving craft chocolate scene in Utah, and they source their cacao from a single farm in Central Peru. All their chocolate is raw: unprocessed and un-roasted. They sweeten only with raw honey, absolutely no processed sugar, and feature flavors like Chipotle Orange, Blackberry Ginger, and Gingerbread Roobios. They blend culinary and medicinal herbs for their unique Wild Spice Bar.

Buy it ~ you can buy The Chocolate Conspiracy chocolate here



ghost pepper bar


Manoa Chocolate ~ Oahu Hawaii

What makes it special ~ Hawaii is the only place in the US where cacao grows, in fact Hawaii is the northernmost location it can grow anywhere in the world. Manoa is an important part of Hawaii’s emerging chocolate industry, it sources local farms and makes use of the unique terroir of the Hawaiian islands. They liken craft chocolate production to wine making (although chocolate has over 600 flavor components, while wine only has 200.)  To educate people about the subject, they’ve launched Craft Chocolate TV.

Buy it ~ you can purchase Manoa chocolate here.



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    Leave a Reply

  • Reply
    December 1, 2020 at 2:22 pm

    I have to say, my favorite chocolate bar of all time is Dick & Taylor’s Belize Toledo bar. I haven’t yet found its equal. I also order regularly from Dandelion and Recchiuti. A newer one I discovered at a craft market is Deux Cranes, in San Diego, which has some really interesting flavors. Highly recommend.

  • Reply
    Bradley Potter
    August 4, 2020 at 12:35 pm

    It’s so hard to make a single list that includes chocolate makers and chocolatiers. Vosges is a perfect example of why – their confections / truffles are very good, but their bars of chocolate are pretty poor. They are two very different arts, and being good at one doesn’t necessarily translate to the other.

    I’m not all that versed in chocolatiers beyond a few local ones, I typically prefer bars of pure single-origin chocolate. It’s so hard to narrow it down these days as there are SOOO MANY amazing makers. Even if you limit it to the US, there’s Goodnow Farms, Ritual. Fresco, Fruition, Maverick, Raaka, Wm Chocolate, French Broad, Dick Taylor, Castronovo, Acalli, Crow and Moss, Escazu, Amano, Letterpress, Map, Patric, Solstice, Rogue, Woodblock. I’m sure I’ve missed some still. Of the bunch, I think my favorite (in terms of consistently exceptional quality) has been Goodnow Farms.

    Also, Taza is interesting, but right up the road in the same neighborhood is Somerville Chocolates, which is a much smaller but (in my opinion) much better chocolate maker.

    Thanks for the list. I always love finding out about makers I’m not familiar with, and now I know a few good chocolatiers to look out for when travelling.

  • Reply
    Cynthia Chaddick
    January 26, 2020 at 7:59 pm

    I love Rechutti in San Francisco. If I’m buying the best as a gift or for special occasions I order from them. I went on a Chocolate tour many years ago and we went to 7 different chocolate brands and stores. That’s where I found Rechutti. 7 shops are too much chocolate regardless less of how much town you cover walking !

  • Reply
    January 26, 2020 at 5:07 pm

    holl’s chocolates from west virginia. i received some as a christmas gift. they were divine.

  • Reply
    January 26, 2020 at 3:52 pm

    You should try Nuance in Fort Collins, CO. They have this amazing drink called Theo brew which is made similar to coffee, but with cacao beans instead. Everything is single origin, bean-to-bar and they also offer chocolate tasting flights with notes on the different origins and profiles. It’s like stepping off the street into a European cafe and it smells wonderful!

    • Reply
      January 26, 2020 at 4:07 pm

      I’m fascinated by the chocolate brew, I need to experiment with that.

  • Reply
    Cathi Graves Tudman
    January 26, 2020 at 1:11 pm

    Our local choclatier, Raphio Chocolate in Fresno, Ca, is pretty terrific & has won awards.

    • Reply
      January 26, 2020 at 2:40 pm

      It’s nice to see the chocolate industry being appreciated 🙂

  • Reply
    January 26, 2020 at 12:58 pm

    My most favorite chocolate shop, ever!! My husband practically had to drag me out of the place…the smell was beyond belief! I thought I had gone to heaven when I first tasted their frozen hot chocolate at the Findley Market location. They have since opened a second location. If you ever get to Cincinnati, this is a not-to-miss stop!

    • Reply
      January 26, 2020 at 2:24 pm

      Second vote for this one, I’ve got to go 🙂

      • Reply
        Bradley Potter
        August 4, 2020 at 12:37 pm

        Third – I’ve sampled tons of craft makers from all over and still find this local shop can hold its own with the best of them. They first turned me onto craft chocolate a couple years ago and it has been legitimately life changing!

  • Reply
    January 26, 2020 at 12:32 pm

    What a surprise to see my neighborhood chocolate store listed in your blog! I live around the corner from Garcia Nevett in Miami. It’s a beautiful shop with delicious chocolates.

    • Reply
      January 26, 2020 at 12:38 pm

      What luck for you Donna! My readers are everywhere so I knew some of you would have first hand experience with these chocolatiers. Not sure I could handle being so close to great chocolate 😉

  • Reply
    Deb Burnham
    January 26, 2020 at 11:29 am

    Add to the list to try… Christopher Elbow Chocolates, Kansas City, MO.

    • Reply
      January 26, 2020 at 11:38 am

      omg I want those heart shaped truffles!

  • Reply
    January 26, 2020 at 10:22 am

    Hi Sue!

    Definitely check out Chocolate Hollow in Vermont. They make non-dairy milk chocolate you’d swear was made with milk. Delicious! A real find for those who can’t or don’t eat dairy.

  • Reply
    January 26, 2020 at 10:00 am

    I have to add the outstanding Maverick Chocolate Co. in Cincinnati. Two locations–Rookwood and historic Findlay Market. So good!

    • Reply
      January 26, 2020 at 12:45 pm

      Great flavors…the lemon lavender white chocolate has my name on it.

      • Reply
        Bradley Potter
        August 4, 2020 at 12:50 pm

        Yes! There seem to be several Cincinnati locals on here! If you like white chocolate, the white w/ cocoa nibs is also awesome. Their single origin bars cycle through, but when they have the Morropon, Piura Blanco, or Big Island Hawaii, those are all great, super fruity and flavorful. Can never go wrong with Madagascar either. If you’re into coffee, their Espresso Dark Milk bar is incredible. They blend in some coffee beans and roast them and process them with all the cocoa beans to get a really uniform, smooth coffee flavor. So good!!

  • Reply
    January 26, 2020 at 9:41 am

    You forgot to list:
    Bridgewater Chocolate
    12 LaSalle Rd
    West Hartford, CT

    • Reply
      January 26, 2020 at 9:58 am

      I’ve had their chocolate many times…the packaging is gorgeous!

  • Reply
    January 26, 2020 at 9:17 am

    So sad you missed Vicuña Chocolate in Peterborough, NH.

    • Reply
      January 26, 2020 at 9:29 am

      Maybe it’ll make the next list ~ there’s so much great chocolate out there!

  • Reply
    Terese Blair
    January 26, 2020 at 9:15 am

    I discovered Vosges in Chicago when they first started up years ago, thought I’d died and gone to heaven!??
    Another great place is in Grand Haven MI, called Patricia’s Chocolate, to die for! Check out their web site, they ship too.

    • Reply
      January 26, 2020 at 9:29 am

      I’m off to check them out 🙂

  • Reply
    January 26, 2020 at 8:47 am

    Hi Sue. The Frans salted caramels are going to kill me one day. My Seattle niece brings them to me every time I see her, and they are so damn good. I wondered if you know about Raaka Chocolate, in Red Hook, Brooklyn. They make their chocolate right there in their little factory, and the chocolate is unusual because they don’t roast the beans. You really get a sense of the different bean origins and the subtle flavors. You can also take a class there, which is not about bonbons but about actually making the chocolate and understanding their process. It’s a real find.

    • Reply
      January 26, 2020 at 8:56 am

      Lol, I can well imagine, Ina and Barack agree with you 🙂 I’ll look up Raaka, I think I will definitely need to do another post with all these great suggestions. One of the other chocolatiers in this post also uses their chocolate raw, and they say the same thing, that roasting can disguise the subtleties of the flavor.

      • Reply
        Bradley Potter
        August 4, 2020 at 12:45 pm

        Raaka is really good. They also have an incredibly deft touch with “inclusions”. I usually prefer pure chocolate bars, but we’ve loved a bunch of their inclusions, too. The pink sea salt is great, it brings out the natural fruitiness of the Peruvian cocoa. The bananas foster bar was incredible – I got it as a gift for my wife thinking I wouldn’t care for it, but it was so subtle and beautifully executed. The bourbon cask aged was also really good. I’ve been really impressed with them!

  • Reply
    January 26, 2020 at 8:15 am

    I’ve bought TAZA chocolate and enjoyed it. It has basic, simple, natural ingredients and is about as pure as pure gets. It grainy but not unpleasant. I’d buy it again.

    • Reply
      January 26, 2020 at 8:25 am

      When I used to live near Boston I used to get it all the time, even went on their tour!

    • Reply
      Bradley Potter
      August 4, 2020 at 12:55 pm

      The grainy texture is because of their traditional mexican methods for grinding the chocolate. It’s one of their iconic characteristics. If you live in the area, you should also check out a tiny shop called Somerville Chocolates. More of a tiny craft maker, but very good. You can also find their bars at some of the nice local markets or coffee shops. Also – Goodnow Farms is located about 30 mins west of Boston. Their chocolate is some of my favorite, and (when this Covid thing finally passes!) they normally have a cart at the Boston Public Market. Boston is blessed with some really good chocolate!

  • Reply
    Phyllis Bergst
    January 26, 2020 at 8:04 am

    You really need to check out Spokandy in Spokane, Washington, all things chcocolate but also some to die for mints. I order from them frequently.

    • Reply
      January 26, 2020 at 8:26 am

      I will ~ I may need to do an encore post with all the places I’ve missed!

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