Cococlectic Delivers the Chocolatey Goods Plus a Food Gal Giveaway

One of the Twenty-Four Blackbirds dark chocolate bars in February's Cococlectic delivery

One of the Twenty-Four Blackbirds dark chocolate bars in February’s Cococlectic delivery.

Imagine getting a package of four premium, handcrafted chocolate bars delivered to your door every month.

If that isn’t a chocoholic’s dream, what is?

San Francisco’s Cococlectic is a craft bean-to-bar club that does exactly that.

The new company was started by Doreen Leong, who grew up in Malaysia and moved to the Bay Area to pursue an MBA. She worked in the corporate world for many years, but never felt fulfilled. Then, she hit on an idea inspired by her relationship with her sister, to whom she’d regularly send gifts of chocolate. Why not start a company for chocolate lovers like her who are always eager to try a great new bar?

Leong looks for unique products made in small batches from bean to bar. They are all dark chocolate, the favorite of chocolate connoisseurs. Plus, she likes the fact that dark chocolate has been reported to have certain antioxidant properties. None of the bars selected contain nuts or fruits or additional ingredients that might detract from the purity of the chocolate, itself.

Membership levels start at $27 per month. Each monthly shipment includes four chocolate bars. Membership also allows you to purchase more of the same bars if you find you can’t live without them. Those who sign up for a six-month membership receive a 1-month free trial membership for a friend.

Recently, I had a chance to try a sample box. February’s featured chocolate maker is Twenty-Four Blackbirds, which was founded by Mike Orlando in Santa Barbara. Chocolate making started out as a side passion to his real job as a marine biologist. His bars are hand-made from only two ingredients: organic cacao beans and organic sugar.

My box contained four bars: 68% Dominican Republic, 75% Madagascar , and two of the 75% Bolivian Palos Blancos.

An example of Cococlectic's monthly chocolate box.

An example of Cococlectic’s monthly chocolate box.

The bars are quite smooth on the palate. The 68% Dominican Republic, sourced from a cocoa-farming cooperative, boasts a lot of berry fruitiness with a fair amount of acidity. The 75% Madagascar is full of cherry and blueberry flavors balanced by earthiness and a hint of tangy citrus. The 75% Bolivian Palos Blancos is extremely creamy, with almost a vanilla presence, and hardly any bitterness or acidity.

Additional Twenty-Four Blackbirds bars (1.41 ounces each) sell on the Cococlectic site for $8 each.

CONTEST: One lucky Food Gal reader will win a sample gift box of chocolate bars from Cocoeclectic ($34 value). Entries, limited to those in the continental United States, will be accepted through midnight PST March 1. The winner will be announced March 3.

How to win?

Just tell me what you most look forward to receiving in the mail. Best answer wins.

Here’s my own response:

“Is it crass to say paychecks from my editors? But when you freelance and often don’t get paid until well after publication, that can mean months and months before getting compensated. That’s why rifling through a stack of envelopes to finally spot one definitely makes my day.”

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  • Cards from family and friends. Packages work too!

  • A very rare treat isan actual letter, as most my correspondence these days is email and texts.

  • A fun new way to try artisan chocolate. Yay!

  • My close friends and I send each other random, hand-written notes in the mail just for fun, even if we live up the street from each other. It’s all done randomly, so one day I’ll suddenly receive a note from a gal-pal in NYC and it makes my day!

  • I really enjoy receiving my smiling Amazon boxes. I mean, of course I know what’s inside. But it’s almost always something I’m eagerly awaiting. Usually it’s some new kitchen toy for me to play with.

  • We’re parents to an active 17 month old and we like to keep diaper inventory tight. Sometimes too tight! Nothing brings a smile to my face faster than the box of pampers on the front porch.

  • I love receiving packages, especially mail orders that I’ve forgotten I’ve ordered

  • I rarely get anything but bills but I do get excited about my weekly coupon book!

  • that elusive sweepstakes response that says, ‘you are a winner’ along with the release form signing your life away and the w-9, signing your federal tax life away as well. just hope it’s not a $50 dollar bag of jelly beans.

  • My favorite thing to receive in the mail are Birthday cards, for you never know what surprise is inside them. Also unexpected letters and packages from family and friends.

  • Chocolate is always nice to receive. 🙂

  • Anything that isn’t a bill or bank offering me a new credit card – only 100% APR – makes me so happy! My tried and true favorites: Amazon Prime orders, wedding invitations, baby announcements, and my People magazines.

  • Wedding Invitations, I am obsessed with the beautiful stationary and thoughtful input that it takes into these wonderful invitations.

  • I most look forward to receiving letters and cards from my nieces and nephews.

  • Anything that is edible especially at the end of the month when I am broke and just wishing for something sweet to eat in my house. I hate to resort to eating sugar from the sugar bowl….but I will!!!

  • Anything I wouldn’t normally buy for myself but have received as a gift!

  • Every month, I look forward to getting the latest issue of our neighborhood newsletter called “The Gazette.” Our community’s self-proclaimed “Mayor” rides through our neighborhood in her golf cart to deliver the newsletters to our mailboxes. Oh what a delight it is to read tidbits about our neighborhood kids’ achievements in school or birthday milestones, or who is coming/leaving our community, witty riddles, stories about the “old days” from neighbors who have been living here for decades, and tried and true family recipes that our neighbors so generously share with us in “The Gazette.” In fact, I can’t wait to check our mailbox for the March issue tomorrow!

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