Fresno chocolate shop seeing sweet success with storefront

When you walk into Raphio Chocolate in northeast Fresno, you are immediately greeted by the sweet aroma of Chocolate. In the back, you will find owner Elisia Otavi - Makmur turning cocoa beans into magic.

"We make chocolate from scratch, from real raw cocoa beans, we roast them and make chocolate bars," she said.

Almost all of it is single origin chocolate, meaning it is organic and the cocoa beans are imported from one source, like Madagascar and Nicaragua. Those are paired with simple ingredients.

"It is basically cocoa beans, with a touch of cocoa butter and the rest is organic cane sugar, therefore we are able to showcase the real taste of the beans," she said.

In total, they make 15 different bars. They also incorporate local products. They have a line with Enzo Olive Oil and an awarding winning bar crafted with Kuppa Joy coffee beans and all of them sold in their storefront on First and Barstow. It has been open for a little more than a year and business has been great.

"if I ever decided to quit, I would make a lot of people upset," she said.

Initially, they intended their facility to be a manufacturing plant only. They would sell at farmers markets and a few stores. Demand kept growing and the phone kept ringing.

"Alright I got the message, we have to open our doors," said Otavi - Makmur.

The next venture for the business includes making drinks at their store like hot chocolate and mochas. They also do tours and the next one is on February 28th.
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