The Sweet Life Tale of a Chocolatier

The Sweet Life Tale of a Chocolatier
Daniel Stubbe

By Cristina Carpio,
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It’s no secret that I am a chocolate fan. Not just any chocolate, but good, high-quality ones. I especially enjoy discovering places that takes a lot of pride when it comes to the chocolate making process. Six generation chocolatier and konditor, Daniel Stubbe and his family have been making bread and pastries since 1845. Daniel spent his formative years playing in the kitchen of his family’s hometown. After high school, he was encouraged by his parents to hone his passions into pastry apprenticeship where he grew up in Germany to carry on the family tradition. For a lot of us, sometimes it takes a few years before we figure out what we are destined to do. That’s not the case with Daniel. As soon as he began his apprenticeship, he already knew the chocolate making business was going to be his life as soon as he put on that apron. It certainly makes things easier as their family have always been in the chocolate making and pastry business. During his apprenticeship, Daniels father, Heinrich Stubbe decided to start a life in Canada in 1989 and opened up a small chocolate and pastry shop in Ottawa, Ontario.

Growing up in Germany, a lot of the chocolatiers start as a pastry chef and branch out to specializing in different things according to Daniel. He decided to focus on chocolate making and becoming a chocolatier. Daniel eventually decided to move to Canada and join his father which lead him to open his shop in Toronto in 1995. Even with so many years of experience under his belt, Daniel says he is continuing to educate himself. According to this well-known chocolatier in Toronto, after 20 years in business, he still gets the typical questions from customers such as if the chocolates come from Belgium or Switzerland. Daniel says a lot of people are not aware of the many countries chocolate can come from like Tanzania, Venezuela and others. As a chocolatier, he continues to visit plantations all over the world to this day to keep learning and sourcing from the best suppliers.

The Sweet Life Tale of a ChocolatierMost recently, Daniel decided to take his business to the next level and create his very own blend of chocolates. He partnered up with Cacao Barry, one of the world’s best chocolate institutions in the world. Started by Charles Barry who is a renowned innovator of chocolate, the company strives to continue mastering the process of cocoa and sourcing the best beans in the world. Known for their perfect flavours, textures and finesse chocolates, master chefs, confectioners and restaurants from all over the world go to Cacao Barry to provide them with their chocolate needs. They even have a Chocolate Academy where they offer courses to artisans for professional techniques, and chocolate making trends and recipes. Daniel partnered with Cacao Barry’s OrNoir program to create his very own signature blends Verliebt (German for ‘in love’) and Verspielt (German for ‘playful’). Both the milk and dark chocolate blends are not available anywhere else in the world. It’s all about exclusivity these days, and customers love it. “It is an expression of my love for chocolate, and what I love about it. Verliebt is dark chocolate that constantly evolves and builds on the palate. Each experience with it is slightly different and exciting. Meanwhile, Verspielt is rich, deep and memorable milk chocolate that playfully elevates the traditional milk chocolate taste with a higher cacao content.”

The Sweet Life Tale of a Chocolatier
Cristina and Daniel

I’m all for giving back to the community, and I believe every business should make every effort to support local causes at all times. Daniel believes in helping the local economy which I admire. He employs many Annex residents, where his shop is located. He is one of very few chefs who also hires many youths in need of opportunities and second chances in life. Even with no experience in the business, Daniel takes the time to train his staff and guide them in becoming future chocolatiers themselves. Consumers are also more supportive of chefs using local ingredients, and Daniel is one of those chefs. For instance, he uses a Toronto-sourced honey for all his recipes and uses herbs from the community gardens. During the summer months, Daniel even creates limited time hand-painted bonbons using the local ingredients available, a tradition that dates back to his childhood in Germany. What’s next for this chocolatier? He is not interested in opening more shops however very much looks forward to his young daughter Georgia continuing the family legacy.