We are a small team who are passionate about what we do
Dar Tavernier-Singer and John Singer started Tavernier Chocolates in 2014 making fresh, creative confections using the region’s bounty of farmed and foraged ingredients available to a wider, adventurous audience. Learn more about their journey to become artisan chocolatiers here.
Dar comes from a food-centric family with a long history of creating chocolates and other confections. Growing up in the fertile St. Lawrence Valley where farms and foraged ingredients abound, Dar and her siblings were encouraged to act on their creative culinary impulses, baking bread, cookies and pastries, and cooking meals. The family table often included milk and cream from local dairy farmers, fruits and vegetables from area farms and orchards and their own garden, wild blueberries, raspberries and blackberries picked trailside in the nearby northern Adirondacks, fresh caught trout from local lakes and streams, and venison, rabbit and pheasant that her father hunted and brought home (verily leading her to become a vegetarian for many years, but that’s another story).
Dar’s love of the outdoors led her to study biology and art as an undergraduate, doing fieldwork with a botany professor and drawing scale illustrations of the plants they studied for publication. Through college and ensuing years of working front and back of house in restaurants and cafés in New York State, San Francisco, the Czech Republic and Vermont, her experimentation with chocolate started in earnest in Brattleboro. In the early aughts, Dar began honing her truffle-making skills by tempering chocolate at home on a marble slab and refining her ganache recipes using ingredients from local farm stands and farmers markets. She develops our recipes, and her background in graphic design and the arts is reflected in her approach to making confections.
John spent several years as head coffee roaster and manager at our local roasting shop when we first touched base in Brattleboro. His experience sourcing beans, cupping with leaders in the field like George Howell, and visiting coffee origins has provided a great background to working with chocolate. John’s years of leading small businesses has fueled our growth from a home-based business to our official launch in 2014 and continued growth today.
Studying with master Japanese chef Hiroshi Hayashi at the Monadnock School for Natural Cooking and Philosophy, Chef Joe Motika has years of back-of-house experience under his belt, cooking at T.J Buckley’s and Letamaya in Brattleboro as well as a private chef, working in the specialty food and beverage industry for 27 years. Joe keeps us laughing, our bars looking pretty, and our production running smoothly.
We couldn’t do it without our amazing posse of talented pals who help us out during the holiday rush! Cheers, friends!