Ghirardelli chocolate display

How This Trusted Chocolate Brand Drives Consistency

How to select the right chocolate for your kitchen and menu.

Trendy ingredients come and go, but chocolate has been a mainstay on menus throughout the years. In 2022, chocolate appeared on 71.2 percent of U.S. menus, according to Datassential, and it is consistently included among the most craveable LTOs. Professional chefs and operators know that premium chocolate elevates their menus and increases purchase intent—and check average—when offered in desserts at the end of a meal.

Premium chocolate manufacturers like Ghirardelli have been perfecting the art of chocolate making for more than 170 years. Selecting the most high-quality beans from around the world and roasting only the nib rather than the whole bean allows them to produce a more consistent chocolate flavor that is then refined for smoothness and conched for intensity. Ghirardelli offers an extensive portfolio of professional products, including a line of premium chocolate available in five-pound bags.

Chefs understand that different types of chocolate carry their own advantages for different applications and that it’s important to have a variety of chocolate available for different dishes. “For example, cookies would require a smaller size chip, but for dipping the cookies, a larger wafer would make for a better application,” says Chef Helmut Holzer, who is one of 11 Global Master Chefs.  

The difference between chips and wafers comes down to the meltability. Chocolate chips contain less cocoa butter than wafers, which allows them to hold their shape rather than melting when heated. “Pastry chefs need a level of cocoa butter content to create shiny Bon-Bons, truffles, and show pieces,” explains Holzer. 

But coveted storage space is in short supply for many smaller restaurant kitchens, which is why Ghirardelli’s five-pound bag line is so appealing to independent operators. The convenience of storing smaller bags as well as mixing-and-matching varieties allows for greater versatility in applications and a restaurant’s unique offerings. 

Ghirardelli’s line of five-pound bags include the best-selling Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips, which are a staple in any chocolate chip cookie. The line also includes Milk Chocolate Wafers, which can be used for baking, pastry, and confectionary goods; Dark Chocolate Wafers, which pair with flavors like red fruit, smoke, and dark liquors; and 100 percent Unsweetened Chocolate Wafers, which boost the chocolate profile of any dish, including savory applications.

As consumer demand for non-dairy options rises and operators look for substitutions while maintaining quality, some might consider Ghirardelli’s 52 percent or 72 percent cacao Dark Chocolate Chips, which are non-dairy, to open up the possibilities for those with dietary restrictions. “I’m personally a big fan of the 72 percent Dark Chocolate Chips. They’ve shown great performance in many applications,” says Holzer.

Ghirardelli is America’s longest continuously operating chocolate manufacturer. Since 2020, 100 percent of its cocoa beans are sourced, traceable, and externally verified by an independent third party. All in all, the line of five-pound bags offers nine different chocolate options to suit the needs of chefs and independent operators. “I appreciate the quality, ease of use, consistent supply, and a well-recognized brand name that can be used on the menu,” says Holzer. 

To learn more about premium chocolate applications as well as Ghirardelli’s five-pound bags, visit the website.