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Good People, Good Chocolate

September 22nd, 2020
chocolate muffins
Speedy hands gently place an assortment of dark chocolate truffles in their trays at our factory in Blue Lake, CA

At Sjaak’s, we are proud of the community that we continue to build ever since the founder and international chocolatier, Jacques Holten, arrived in Blue Lake. A single “mom & pop” chocolate shop eventually grew into a factory of over 20 employees, and the Sjaak’s family only continues to grow. Jacques’ dedication led to a community that is focused on creating and sharing premium-quality, organic chocolate as a reminder to be kind to ourselves, others and our community.

Being part of the Sjaak’s family naturally makes one an ambassador for ourorganic, vegan chocolate. We chose a few members of our valued team and asked them their thoughts on our Sjaakolates, including which is their favorite chocolate product!

Leo M.

Leo M., Sjaak’s talented Factory Manager, who has dedicated 11 years to creating vegan, organic chocolate and leading the teams in Blue Lake.

In 3 words, describe our chocolate.

Oh… rich, creamy, and mm.. delicious.

Which is your favorite Sjaakolate & why?

My favorite chocolate product for the longest time was our 72% Organic Dark Chocolate Bar. It wasn’t bitter, it wasn’t too sweet, and it always had a really nice texture to it. We used to sell a 72% bar and we are going to be doing a 72% Dark Chocolate Heart. Our 3oz organic chocolate bars are going to be 77% which I think is pretty good.

What makes our vegan chocolate special?

While it may be vegan, it certainly does not have that vegan taste that a lot of people expect. It’s special that it mirrors a lot of conventional chocolate. Another way that it’s special is that it takes old world processes and turns them into new world ideas. It’s what chocolate should be.

Jenn H.

Jenn H., Sjaak’s charismatic, Fulfillment Manager, a valued team player, who has worked at Sjaak’s for over 10 years.

In 3 words, describe our chocolate.

Besides … vegan, organic, & kosher? (laughs) The first 3 words that come to mind are delicious, high-quality, and flavorful!

What’s your favorite Sjaakolate & why?

The Green Tea Lemon Heart is absolutely delicious. It’s definitely more citrus than green tea to me. Personally, I like that. That freshness with the dark chocolate makes it taste kind of refreshing. I really like it though. It’s very creamy and just, so delicious. It will change your life.

What makes our vegan chocolate special?

Our chocolate is special because we have a dairy, soy, gluten, and corn free facility which means that so many people across the board can have our chocolates as a treat. Many parents will reach out to tell me, “Thank you so much for making this chocolate, without you my children would not have any holiday treats.” This always makes my heart swell with pride and gratitude. I’m happy to be a part of so many people’s everyday happiness and joy!

Mel D.

Mel D., one of Sjaak’s Packaging Associates, a vibrant member of the Sjaak’s family who joined the team in September 2019

In 3 words, describe our chocolate.

Creative, rich, & handmade.

What’s your favorite Sjaakolate & why?

It would probably be our Cherry Hearts. It has a creamy texture in the middle. This is probably one of the first chocolates I tried at Sjaak’s and thought to myself, “Wow. That’s really good.” Sometimes we get pieces that can’t be sold, so sometimes I eat them for a snack at work. I tell myself, “It’s time for a Cherry Heart to help me get through the day.” This piece of vegan chocolate is a mood booster for me.

What makes our vegan chocolate special?

The amount of time and love that gets put into it. Whatever new flavors come out, our Factory Manager, Leo, has gone around and got opinions from everyone in the factory. Then he really tries to tweak it to where the taste is good to everyone. Each new recipe has been through every person in the factory, before it’s finalized. As a team, we really want it to taste great. We always try to go for quality.

The Sjaak’s community is a tasty one to be a part of. Read more about how it all started here and we only welcome you to join it. Keep an eye out for our next “Good People, Good Chocolate” series as we feature more members of the Sjaak’s community. Shop and explore over 55 vegan, organic chocolates online, including these recommendations!


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