Meet the Makers: Anna Stubbe Interview
- Your website mentions the strong tradition of chefs that runs in your family. How did you know that you would follow in your family's footsteps?
I really wasn’t sure about it for a while. I worked in the family business for about 17 years before I stepped away from it all for about 4 years. And then it was like a light switch, I just knew I had to go back! I opened my own shop 3 years ago. It’s now my Dad, brother and myself, we all have our own independent companies/chocolate shops. We 100% support each other and yes, sometimes it’s a friendly rivalry.
- What made you decide to focus your energy on chocolate making?
I did my apprenticeship in Germany, there the job title pastry chef includes everything pastry, but also chocolate work. Early on I knew that my passion is for everything chocolate, marzipan and nougat, fine flavours and spices. Even now after so many years of working with chocolate, I still love the smell, texture and certainly the taste of it.
- What is the most important thing you have learned about yourself throughout running your own business?
I have so much more in me than I thought. But I also had no idea that I could work this hard.
- What advice would you give to a young person looking to start their own enterprise?
Trust the process, trust yourself! Yes, one has to do some work and research before starting a business, but if it all feels stable and is good to go, trust that it will work. There will be so, so many difficult situations but see them as an opportunity to learn something new. Be open to changes in case things don’t go as planned. Build a support system around you of family and good friends. Step back once in a while to recharge.
- In your opinion, which of your chocolates would pair best with a whisky neat?
I do prefer
whisky with dark chocolate. The semi-sweet dark chocolate with 54% cacao allows for the whisky flavour to come through nicely. A plain chocolate bar works best for this.
- And last, but certainly not least, what is your drink of choice?
Depending on my mood it’s either a glass of red wine or Gin & Tonic. Yes, with Top Shelf Gin :-)