chocolate x design

Meet Mikey; founder/creator/chocolatier/designer, aka Heist Chocolate.

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So, why 'Heist'?

Well the initial idea of making chocolate came from a conversation I had with my dad who was looking to import chocolate from Russia, as he thought it was of a better quality to what you can get in the U.K. With that in mind, I went home and did some research on how to make good chocolate.

I bought some basic equipment and made some bars. They weren't perfect but they were great for a first try and I presented them to my dad. He wasn't Interested in making his own confections, but now I knew it was super fun to make I went about experimenting with different recipes and messing around with wrapper designs, just for fun. I've always had an interest in graphic design and my sweet tooth is insatiable so homemade chocolate on demand is hard to pass up.

Over the months, my equipment scaled up I started to get more serious about chocolate making....one year later, I have my very own micro-chocolate factory!

Soooo, the name comes from the fact that I kind of stole the Idea of chocolate making from my dad and, I like the way it sounds!

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Tell me about a bit more about your branding and collaborations..

When Heist first started trading, the branding was completely different and didn't really reflect my personality so I commisioned my partner to come up with a set of illustrations for a rebrand.

Working with Ellie, I grew to understand what goes into the line of her work and how much of a struggle it could be, especially as someone new to the industry. I think there's a general feeling that design lead jobs aren't real jobs and people often expect you to work for free or undervalue what your time and work is worth.

Since then, I've worked with other illustrators/designers such as Kitty Morgan and Buffy Dunhill and they've blown me away with the stuff they've come up with.

Heist is still a very small operation but I hope to one day be known for having the best chocolate and also helping up and coming artists get their foot in the door.

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Do I hear right, you're a one man band?!

It's tough, really tough. Firstly, I still have a full-time job! So after 5pm is when the Heist factory comes alive.

Making chocolate from scratch is a lengthy and very hands-on process, I place the orders, roast the cocoa beans, crack, winnow, grind, temper, wrap and stitch and post every single bar. I also do all of the graphic design elements. I'm not a naturally organised person but I kind of have to be with so much going on. You have to be planning weeks into the future.

It's a lot of work for one person to do but every order I receive or instagram post I'm tagged in make it all worth it! As I grow I'll look to employ others to help out but I always want to be hands-on in the factory, Heist is a reflection of me and I think that shows in the product, I don't want that to ever change.

My evenings are spent in a chocolate factory listening to tiny desk concerts, I can't complain!

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Go on then, how/what is the best way to enjoy Heist Chocolate?

Most of my chocolate should be enjoyed very slowly. One cube on the tongue and move it around until it coats your mouth, especially the "Into the Dark" bar. That stuff with knock your socks off!

On the other hand, the "Vanilla Milk" bar will be hard not to get all over your face!

Click the button to get your hands on some Heist Chocolate. 

Thanks Mikey!

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Heist is a tiny independent chocolate maker based in Cardiff, Wales which specialises in micro-batches of stone ground chocolate using single origin cacao beans. Each batch is hand sorted and then roasted in a small factory in the centre of the city - run by a one guy team, me, Mikey. Hey, hi 👋