The Smallest Chocolate Factory in the World

Colin Gasko has started a business that some would call insane—making chocolate from raw, unprocessed beans

Even more exciting to me, though, is Kopplin's Rogue single-origin hot chocolate drinks, namely a Sambirano Madagascar hot chocolate in either a shot glass, 8-ounce, or 12-ounce size, for, respectively, $2.25, $3.75, and $4.25. I've tried to write stories for years about the best hot chocolates in town but always abandoned them because the pickings have been so slim; now, finally, under the wire in 2007, we've got one. (Kopplin's Coffee, 490 Hamline Ave. S., St. Paul, 651.698.0457;

What next? I'm guessing that Colin Gasko takes over the world. He's working right now with an engineer who helped develop ConAgra's sunflower-seed processing line to invent something big that will revolutionize chocolate making in our time—or at least in our city.

Colin Gasko and the chocolate factory
Jana Freiband
Colin Gasko and the chocolate factory

If there's one thing watching Gasko in his spic-and-span warren of magical tinkered-with chocolate machines has taught me, it's that while necessity may be the mother of invention, ambition, obsession, and great taste make pretty formidable midwives. 

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