Jacques Torres is not only a master chocolatier, he’s a Brooklyn pioneer. Torres, who had worked as the pastry chef at the renowned Manhattan restaurant Le Cirque, decided to make it on his own in Brooklyn. He set up shop here in Dumbo way back in 2000, then a fledgling neighborhood that didn’t seem like the obvious choice for a chocolate factory.
Torres and his business partner built the factory by hand and from scratch, working right up until opening day. Torres’ goal was to make hand-crafted, premium chocolates without preservatives, additives, extracts, oils or essences. His bon-bons, hot chocolate, chocolate-covered snacks, and chocolate bars became popular quickly, and by 2004 Torres was ready to expand into Manhattan.