A Chocolate Making Family’s Journey of Entrepreneurism
One of the best parts of the entrepreneurial journey is the research and learning (let’s call it discovery) that’s done along the way. It seems as though there is something new around every corner and if you open your mind to it, it’ll stretch you like never before. For example, I was recently reading the blog of an aspiring entrepreneur and he recommended three or four podcasts he listens to on a weekly basis for the purpose of being inspired. I decided to take a shot with one of them and can honestly say it’s changing my life.
The podcast is called From Scratch and is hosted by NPR. According to their website:
From Scratch reviews the entrepreneurial life with leading pioneers from the business world, the social sector, entertainment, and the arts. From Scratch personalizes the lives of entrepreneurs by providing listeners with a candid, first-hand view of the launching process.
I listened to 4 or 5 podcasts the first week I found it and 7 or 8 the following week. My favorite one thus far is about two brothers from Iowa, Rick and Michael Mast, who are chocolate makers living in Brooklyn, NY. The name of their company is Mast Brothers Chocolate and the unique aspect of their business is they make their chocolate ‘from scratch’ with ingredients brought in from around the world. What’s even more interesting to me, however, is their approach to the journey. They talk about it being an adventure and the importance of having a childlike curiosity. Also, not only do they create the chocolate from scratch but they have to “make” their own processing equipment as well. (Although it’s 19 minutes in length, I encourage you to listen to the podcast which can be found at the bottom of this page. It can also be found on iTunes under From Scratch.)
I thought it would be tough for Owen and Malia to sit still for 19 minutes so we opted to view a short video from their website (link at the bottom of this page). I was interested to see their response since they’re big fans of anything sweet. After sitting quietly for most of the video, I could sense their wheels were starting to churn near the end. They each had one question during the video:
Malia: Around 6 minutes, Malia asked, “can we try some daddy?”
Owen: Around 8 minutes, Owen asked, “can we make some daddy?”
As I mentioned in the introduction to our journey, I ‘m not sure where this journey will take us, but we’re certainly enjoying it so far. Personally, I’ve been excited about the kid’s response to trying some new things. I’m also very grateful for the comments on the blog and look forward to the ongoing dialogue.
Finally, I found out this week that our subdivision is hosting its annual thrift sale in two weeks. I’m wondering just how difficult this chocolate making thing can be. Do you think we should give it a try?
Podcast: Click http://www.fromscratchradio.com/show/mast (link is at the bottom, 19 minutes)
Video: Click http://mastbrothers.com/about – (top video, 8 minutes, 48 seconds)
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Disclaimer: I had never heard of Rick or Michael Mast until listening to the NPR Podcast during the last week in April, 2012. I did, however, place an order for 5 bars immediately after listening to it. I also sent them a congratulatory email and their PR representative responded the same day. Check them out at www.mastbrotherschocolate.com and tell ‘em Shafer…Power! sent you their way.