Today we’d like to introduce you to Wade Stembridge.
Wade, we appreciate you taking the time to share your story with us today. Where does your story begin? I started making chocolates four years ago when I got laid off over the holidays. I had no income and needed a creative way to come up with some thoughtful Christmas presents that year. I started researching and experimenting on how to make chocolates. A year later, this new hobby developed into a business.
Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome? The biggest challenge that I’ve been facing is making and shipping chocolates during the summer months. The heat is brutal and the melting point of chocolate falls somewhere between 86°-90°F. So I’ve had to double my ice packs and focus more on local orders during the summer.
We’ve been impressed with Coco Gusto, but for folks who might not be as familiar, what can you share with them about what you do and what sets you apart from others? Coco Gusto is an online artisan chocolate shop that started here in Denver, Colorado. We create a variety of hand-painted chocolates, treats, and gifts. Started from an idea of giving out chocolates with a heartfelt message, Coco Gusto maintains focused on the art of thoughtful gift-giving.
Do you have any advice for those just starting out? The best advice I can offer at this point in my journey is to focus on the product, keep refining it, and find someone who will give you honest feedback. My family and friends are great at sugarcoating their feedback and say things they think I want to hear. I do appreciate the positivity and encouragement but in the end, not getting good feedback only puts you on the wrong path.
VoyageDenver is part of the LA-based Voyage Group of Magazines. Our mission is to promote mom and pops, artists, creatives, makers, and small businesses by providing a platform for these hidden gems to tell their stories in their own words.