Archives for January 2010

Chocolate Myths and Legends

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There are numerous myths and legends about chocolate, many of which have been around since the Mayans cultivated the first cocoa bean. For

instance, is chocolate high in caffeine? Do they cause cavities? Are they bad for your health? With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, we know everyone will be eating lots of chocolate (whether it is out of happiness or depression we’re not sure.) This blog post is going to address some of the myths about chocolate.


 

1. Chocolate causes cavities: There is a popular belief that chocolate causes cavities in your teeth. This is not exactly true. Cavities are formed in a somewhat complicated manner. All food is broken down and formed into acid. Some of the acid that remains in your mouth eats away at the enamel on your teeth, forming cavities. Studies have shown that there are elements in chocolate that actually strengthen the enamel on your teeth and thus help prevent against cavities. In fact, a lot of toothpaste companies have come out with chocolate tooth paste to appeal to a broader range of consumers (chocolate toothpaste sounds great to me.) So although we still recommend you keep brushing your teeth, you’ll be doing your teeth a favor by eating a custom chocolate bar from Chocomize!

 


 

2. Chocolate contains a lot of caffeine: Another popular myth about chocolate is that it contains high levels of caffeine. Actually, a normal 1.5 oz chocolate bar contains the same amount of caffeine as a cup of decaf coffee! To give you an idea of how much caffeine that is, a cup of decaf usually contains around 5 mg of coffee while a cup of coffee can contain anywhere from 60-140mg of caffeine. Nick still swears that he can’t have chocolate past 5 without staying up all night while Eric sometimes falls asleep with half a bar still in his mouth.


 

3. Chocolate is an aphrodisiac: This is probably one of the most well known myths about chocolate. A lot of people swear that chocolate is a powerful aphrodisiac. While we here at Chocomize don’t want to dispel this legend right before Valentine’s Day, there are in fact no studies that back up this popular legend. We’re not going to nitpick this one though; we think giving a custom chocolate bar for Valentine’s Day is the perfect gift for your special someone on Valentine’s Day.


 

4. Chocolate Causes Acne: We’re pretty sure everyone’s parent has told them some point in their life that eating too much chocolate is going to give them acne. Numerous studies have shown, however, that chocolate has no effect on acne. In fact, most researchers are pretty sure that diet in general has no effect. Either way we’re pretty sure you’re mom just wanted to get you to eat your vegetables (or you could eat a healthy ingredient like flax seeds ON your custom chocolate bar itself.)


 

5. Chocolate contains high levels of saturated fat: Chocolate actually contains a special kind of saturated fat called stearic acid. Studies have shown that stearic acid does not actual increase fat the same way other typical saturated fat does, and in fact can actually be beneficial! We aren’t doctors and we haven’t done the research ourselves, but Nick, one of our founding members, is a lightweight rower and he still manages to make weight even though he is constantly eating chocolate all day (we’re giving everyone a hard time in this blog entry if you haven’t noticed.)


 

6. Chocolate is poisonous to dogs: Whoever told you not to feed chocolate to your dog was actually not kidding! Chocolate can be toxic to many animals including dogs, cats, parrots, and horses. These animals can’t process the chemical theobromine and too much chocolate can cause them to die. How much chocolate does a dog have to eat in order for it to be lethal? It only has to be around a pound of regular chocolate for it to be lethal to a dog, but even a small amount can cause a dog to be sick. So make sure that you save the custom chocolate bars for yourself and don’t leave them lying around!


 

We hope this blog post has answered some of your questions regarding chocolate. Our custom chocolate bars make a great gift for Valentine’s Day and we hope that by dispelling some of the more discomforting myths about chocolate you’ll be more likely to buy for that special someone!

Chocolate Myths and Legends

There are numerous myths and legends about chocolate, many of which have been around since the Mayans cultivated the first cocoa bean. For instance, is chocolate high in caffeine? Do they cause cavities? Are they bad for your health? With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, we know everyone will be eating lots of chocolate (whether it is out of happiness or depression we’re not sure.) This blog post is going to address some of the myths about chocolate.

 

1. Chocolate causes cavities: There is a popular belief that chocolate causes cavities in your teeth. This is not exactly true. Cavities are formed in a somewhat complicated manner. All food is broken down and formed into acid. Some of the acid that remains in your mouth eats away at the enamel on your teeth, forming cavities. Studies have shown that there are elements in chocolate that actually strengthen the enamel on your teeth and thus help prevent against cavities. In fact, a lot of toothpaste companies have come out with chocolate tooth paste to appeal to a broader range of consumers (chocolate toothpaste sounds great to me.) So although we still recommend you keep brushing your teeth, you’ll be doing your teeth a favor by eating a custom chocolate bar from Chocomize!

 

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2. Chocolate contains a lot of caffeine: Another popular myth about chocolate is that it contains high levels of caffeine. Actually, a normal 1.5 oz chocolate bar contains the same amount of caffeine as a cup of decaf coffee! To give you an idea of how much caffeine that is, a cup of decaf usually contains around 5 mg of coffee while a cup of coffee can contain anywhere from 60-140mg of caffeine. Nick still swears that he can’t have chocolate past 5 without staying up all night while Eric sometimes falls asleep with half a bar still in his mouth.

 

3. Chocolate is an aphrodisiac: This is probably one of the most well known myths about chocolate. A lot of people swear that chocolate is a powerful aphrodisiac. While we here at Chocomize don’t want to dispel this legend right before Valentine’s Day, there are in fact no studies that back up this popular legend. We’re not going to nitpick this one though; we think giving a custom chocolate bar for Valentine’s Day is the perfect gift for your special someone on Valentine’s Day.

 

4. Chocolate Causes Acne: We’re pretty sure everyone’s parent has told them some point in their life that eating too much chocolate is going to give them acne. Numerous studies have shown, however, that chocolate has no effect on acne. In fact, most researchers are pretty sure that diet in general has no effect. Either way we’re pretty sure you’re mom just wanted to get you to eat your vegetables (or you could eat a healthy ingredient like flax seeds ON your custom chocolate bar itself.)

 

5. Chocolate contains high levels of saturated fat: Chocolate actually contains a special kind of saturated fat called stearic acid. Studies have shown that stearic acid does not actual increase fat the same way other typical saturated fat does, and in fact can actually be beneficial! We aren’t doctors and we haven’t done the research ourselves, but Nick, one of our founding members, is a lightweight rower and he still manages to make weight even though he is constantly eating chocolate all day (we’re giving everyone a hard time in this blog entry if you haven’t noticed.)

 

6. Chocolate is poisonous to dogs: Whoever told you not to feed chocolate to your dog was actually not kidding! Chocolate can be toxic to many animals including dogs, cats, parrots, and horses. These animals can’t process the chemical theobromine and too much chocolate can cause them to die. How much chocolate does a dog have to eat in order for it to be lethal? It only has to be around a pound of regular chocolate for it to be lethal to a dog, but even a small amount can cause a dog to be sick. So make sure that you save the custom chocolate bars for yourself and don’t leave them lying around!

 

We hope this blog post has answered some of your questions regarding chocolate. Our custom chocolate bars make a great gift for Valentine’s Day and we hope that by dispelling some of the more discomforting myths about chocolate you’ll be more likely to buy for that special someone!

Ingredient of the week: Happy Birthday Plaques


It’s time for the ingredient of the week! This blog post has been a little delayed. Things have been pretty busy over in Chocomize land. We’ve been getting a lot of orders (thanks to all our customers!) and had a lot of great responses to the customer survey we sent out last week. In addition, Chocomize has been getting a ton of press lately both on and off the internet. To find out more about this, check out our past blog posts or check out our press page.


happy_birthday_plaque

So this week’s featured ingredient is actually more of a topping. It is our happy birthday plaques! Our custom chocolate bars are extremely popular for gifts (we definitely have solved your Valentine’s Day problem) especially birthday gifts. We’ve featured other great birthday items in the ingredient of the week, like our candle holder, but we’re proud to say that the happy birthday plaques our definitely our favorite.

 

As you can see in the picture, our happy birthday plaques are written on a white background. They are completely edible (we don’t put anything on our bars that aren’t) and are made out of an always popular and tasty substance: sugar.


If you’re looking to make and give a custom chocolate bar to someone for their birthday we definitely recommend our happy birthday plaques. We think they go well with our candle holders, but if you’re looking to make a festive bar (a birthday is always a good time to celebrate no matter how old you are turning) we recommend you add sprinkles.


Thanks as always to people who keep sending in suggestions for us to add to our list of ingredients. Coming soon is going to be a Valentine’s Day tab where we feature new and special ingredients great Valentine’s Day bars (think I love you plaques, hearts, Happy Valentine’s Day plaques, etc.) Stay tuned for updates and as always if you have any questions or comments you can reach us at info@chocomize.com.

Lots of new press

Just wanted to give everyone an update on all the great press we’ve been getting. We recently were visited by the Burlington County Times. Two reporters came to our facility to take pictures of us and our chocolate. They wrote a great article which you can read in our press section. Here’s a picture of them at our facility with us:

 

reperters

 

In addition, we’ve been featured in a ton of new blogs, including brides.com. Our custom chocolate bars have been really popular as wedding favors. For those of you who don’t know, we can custom design not only the ingredients in our chocolate, but the packaging on the boxes as well! Custom chocolate bars make a really classy and unique gift. If you are planning a wedding in the future, or know someone who is, I recommend checking out our special weddings page here.


Stay tuned for more updates on press, as well as the upcoming ingredient of the week! If you are interested in reading the brides.com blog, or any of the other new blogs, check out our press page.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Customer Feedback

Thanks to everyone who has filled out the survey so far! We’ve had a lot of great and helpful responses. Below is some of the feedback we’ve gotten from customers, as well as some changes we plan on making based on the responses so far…keep it coming!

 


Comments on overall experience:


-“ Unique packaging; I like the ingredients on one side and the scoring of the bar on the other; like the size/portion of the bar; website easy to use and directions are clear”


-“Great concept and great execution of it! Love your product, your website design & the ordering process (I’m a web designer and programmer, so can appreciate good design and user interface). Keep up the good work!”


-“ Not only did I love the idea of customizing my own chocolate, but I endorsed and told everyone about the site at my holiday parties this year. I am sure to buy many bars over this year and many for our Christmas party. Thank you so much!!!”


-“ I think you guys have a great product. I think it’s especially nice that you are a local business. I’ve had a Birkenstock shoe store in Princeton for over 14 years. I like to see young entrepreneurship at it’s best. Samples along with orders wouldn’t be a bad idea either.”


-“ I was so impressed with your service. I ordered the Sat. or Sun. before Christmas and received my order on Christmas Eve. That just doesn’t happen in Hawaii! Everyone with whom I have shared the chocolate has raved about it. You offer an amazing service and a superior product. I am grateful I found you!”


-“ Just to commend you on an awesome job. Keep adding and trying out new ingredients. Keep listening to your customers. Keep up the quality packaging and the reasonable costs. Nothing negative at all about you guys – loved my experience with your website.”


-“ Honestly one of the best chocolate bars I’ve ever tasted, mainly because the Customer designs it and knows what she/he likes in terms of ingredients. You added extra bacon at my request and even noted that in the handwritten note. That shows such dedication and care for Customers.”

 


Improvements:


- “nice work – site turned out very well. my only suggestion may be to get it so when you mouse over ingredients, the pic gets bigger. i think the ingredient pictures really sell the product. also would have been good to see more pics of what finished bars look like earlier in the ordering process, i think people like to see vaguely what the finished prod will look like.”

-Thanks for the suggestion. We like to think the pictures of our ingredients look good as well so we are definitely going to make them appear larger when you click on the question mark! We also plan on putting more pictures of the actual bar on our site so you can have a better idea of how great they look.


-“ I thought at Christmas time some crushed candy cane would have been a nice option.”

-Unfortunatly we didn’t think about this until a couple days before Christmas. We have crushed peppermint on the website now and it tastes absolutely delicious! We liked it so much it was the ingredient of the week, make sure you read all about it in our past blog.


-“ I was bummed there was no “sea salt” and no “caramel” as choices but I wrote to you and VOILA! Now you have those! AWESOME!! =) I think a creamy peanut butter would ROCK in a chocolate bar… =)”

-Thanks for the suggestion of sea salt and caramel. We’ve added both to the list of the ingredients and they taste amazing. As for peanut butter, we do have peanut butter drops which taste delicious and come highly recommended.


-“ More suggestions on combinations would be helpful. For example,”if you combine the sea salt with such and such chocolate you get a nice sweet and savory taste or cayenne pepper would give you this kind of taste etc.”

-“ A list of suggested combos might be nice, there are a ton of things (that’s good) but I’m not sure what goes with what.”

-We totally agree that it can hard sometimes to choose what ingredients to put in your bar with so many great choices. We have a section called favorites which has some of our favorite combinations (guess how we came up with the name?)  Some of our ingredients are featured in our blog as the ingredient of the week and we try to have some good suggestions for combinations that go well together. Check out our past ingredients of the week to get a good idea. If you still are stumped, shoot us an e-mail or give us a call, we’d love to tell you what we think about whatever ingredient you’re thinking of.


Thanks again to everyone who has filled out the survey so far. We’ll keep you updated on responses and let you know the final results. Shoot us an e-mail at info@chocomize.com if you have any more questions!