Nine years ago, Carolina Quijano tasted the bar of chocolate that would change the entire trajectory of her life. A few short years later, she left New York City and her well-paying finance job behind to move home to Miami and open Exquisito Chocolates to pursue creating chocolate wonders of her own.
The secret to great chocolate? The source. And for Carolina, Miami’s first bean-to-bar chocolate maker, she’s got the hook-up. Proclaimed the “Chocolate Empress”, Carolina and team craft incredible chocolates from organically and sustainably-grown, direct trade cacao beans sourced from over eight origin farms in Latin America and the Caribbean.
For Exquisito Chocolates, these origin farm’s unique stewardship of the land is a cherished piece of the whole puzzle. Maintaining sustainable practices within the farms and paying equitable wages (well above corporately-owned chocolate producers) to the farmers themselves is imperative to uplifting their surrounding communities, which in turn leads to better quality practices and products.
With each farm, the nutrients and beneficial bacteria in the soil varies, as do the weather and air. All of this creates a bean with a flavor that is so unique, it's actually possible to pinpoint to a specific farm simply by taste. At Exquisito Chocolates, they lean into the diversity of each cacao flavor and because they source these beans directly from the farmers, they have full control over the crafting process, crafting their bars in single-origin batches for the most unreal, purest chocolate.Our Exquisito Chocolates Hazelnut Cookies & Cream (v) (available in our Miami shops) is an unrestrained, ultra-creamy plant-based delight. Chocolate and coconut cream ice cream amped up with hazelnut butter, Little Havana’s Exquisito Chocolate stracciatella, and tender homemade vegan, gluten-free oreo cookie crumbs.