Meet the woman behind Kacao

Name – Kelsey Anderson

Age – 24

Home – Richmond, North Yorkshire

Did you always want to have your own chocolate business? I have always been a lover of all things chocolate but it wasn’t until I went travelling to South America that I really became aware of the whole chocolate experience and journey.

Before I started university I took some time out to go travelling and I was lucky enough to visit some locations where the very best cacao beans in the world are grown and I quickly developed a fascination for these beautiful and traditional plantations, seeing firsthand how the cacao bean is grown and how the surrounding communities benefit from this delicious natural product.

I knew that I wanted to do something that I would be able to show my creativity and passion for making fresh produce.

How did you learn to make chocolate? I enrolled in an intensive course all about the art of making chocolate in London – an amazing experience and I learned everything from tempering to enrobing. My mind was made-up this was the career for me.

Where does the name Kacao come from? Chocolate beans are originally grown from the fruit of Theobroma trees, more commonly known as a cacao (with a c) beans, these tiny beans grow 20 degrees north and south of the equator, in a very hot and tropical climate. I wanted to put my own spin on it so changed the ‘c’ to a ‘k’.

When did you launch Kacao? I started Kacao at the end of last year and I officially opened my first shop in January 2015, which is at Sedbury Hall Stables, just on the outskirts of Richmond. It’s a really beautiful location, I am surrounded by lavender and roses at the Stables and I couldn't ask for a more beautiful backdrop for the creative thought process that goes into the flavours, ingredients and decoration.

What is unique about your product? All my products are made from Fair Trade chocolate. This is such an important and integral part of Kacao, not only do I focus on using the finest tasting couverture but it must also be Fair Trade and sustainably sourced chocolate. The cacao bean is at the heart of the communities I visited, with so many families relying on it for work, food and so much more.

What is the ethos behind Kacao? I want to create chocolate treats that are not only delicious and well presented, but they also had to take the customer on a sensory journey. I want them to be surprised, indulged and enjoy every single bite.

We try to keep everything as fresh and locally sourced as possible which is why I believe we have such strong and distinctive flavours. Creating fun and unusual flavour is at the heart of everything I do at Kacao.