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Nashville’s own Willy Wonka + a Giveaway!

Olive and Sinclair Southern Artisan Chocolate

Buying local seems to be a trend lately. And I think that’s weird, it shouldn’t be trendy to support those in your community. It should be second nature. We’re getting there. But there is something that makes me giddy about a local business that truly rocks. It’s a hard feeling to describe, but the fact this amazing product, this truly divine thing, is coming out of my town, well, it makes me PROUD to live where I do. As Taylor and I are owners of two small businesses ourselves, to say it’s an important part of our lives is an understatement. And so when we stumble upon another talented individual doing something fantastic locally, well, I’m going to use whatever clout this little blog of mine gives me and promote the heck out of it. So there.

Olive and Sinclair Southern Artisan Chocolate

Enter Olive and Sinclair. The artisan chocolate company based in, you guessed it, Nashville. Owner Scott Witherow magically transforms unassuming raw cocoa beans into smooth and silky chocolate bars, like our very own Willy Wonka with a Southern drawl. I’ve been subtly stalking O&S since their chocolate first debuted this summer. I had my first taste of their unique Salt & Pepper bar at the Tomato Art Fest (yes, Nashville actually has a festival celebrating all things tomato), and I was hooked.

When I saw the O&S guys again this past weekend, they made sure to continue feeding my little addiction with samples of their newest creation, Mexican-style Cinnamon Chili. Yes, you heard me correctly. And yes, it is even more amazing than it sounds.

Did they hack into my dreams? Steal my vision for the best thing I could ever even fathom tasting? So while I may have previously been a die hard Salt & Pepper fan (the chocolate bar, NOT the group) Now? My heart belongs to Cinnamon Chili.

And the best thing about local businesses? They are approachable. On a whim, I sent the guys an email politely gushing like some sort of chocolate-covered teeny bopper. And you know what? It paid off. I got a factory tour.

Can I just say that some one needs to bottle the scent of a chocolate shop and sell it. Because I would totally buy it. Taylor and I came home still sniffing our shirts because it was just so wonderful.

Raw Cocoa Beans and Cocoa Bean Roaster

Tempering the Chocolate

The whole process of chocolate making is so intriguing to me. And the fact that Olive & Sinclair takes raw single-origin cocoa beans from Ghana and the Dominican Republic and transforms them into something so rich and divine, well, it’s truly amazing. When you’re eating chocolate, of any kind, you never really think about just how many steps it takes to get it there. There’s the roasting (which O&S does in a train-like coffee roaster), grinding (twice – once with an old-style stone grinder, and again with something a bit more high tech), then conching, tempering, molding, wrapping… and probably a half a dozen other steps that I can’t recall because I was too enamored with the scent and forgot to take notes. Whoops.

What makes Olive & Sinclair so special? It’s just as they describe it, Southern Artisan. Southern because the bars are made with brown sugar for an extra rich and robust flavor. Artisan because it is crafted by hand, the same hands that roast the raw beans also wrap the final bars. It’s an amazing process with an equally amazing outcome.

What’s even better is that the guys at O&S have so generously donated a mini-sampler of sorts. A delightful stack of 3 of their most popular flavors, plus an exclusive (not yet available in stores) bar of the aforementioned heaven that is Mexican-style Cinnamon Chili. And while I really just wanted to hoard all this goodness for myself (and, ok, maybe give a piece or two to Taylor), I am, against my better judgment, giving it away to one of you.

Olive and Sinclair Southern Artisan Chocolate

You heard me. One lucky winner will receive four bars of Olive & Sinclair chocolate, fresh off the line (O&S worker Casey literally wrapped them just before we walked in – in fact, I think we interrupted him in the process). The mini-sampler includes two of our favorites, Salt & Pepper and Sea Salt, plus the extra dark 75% bar, AND a super special exclusive sample bar of the Mexican Cinnamon Chili bar. How’s that for a prize?

TO ENTER: simply leave a comment on this post by midnight (cst) on Monday, November 2. Only one entry per person. I will randomly select the winner first thing on Tuesday morning.

You can also get yourself a BONUS entry by twittering about this giveaway, or posting it on your own blog. Simply leave an additional comment with a link to the tweet and/or blog post. One bonus entry per person (multiple tweets won’t get you multiple bonus entries).

Be sure you enter a valid email address, because if your name is drawn and I can’t get ahold of you, I will choose an alternate winner. You may also want to add me to your address book (lindsay AT loveandoliveoil DOT com) for good measure, I’d hate for your congratulatory email to end up in the spam folder. That would be a sad sad day.

Don’t want to wait for the results to get your hands on some of this goodness? Lucky for you Olive & Sinclair will ship their artisan chocolate directly to you! Simply shoot them an email through their website or blog to order. Tell them Lindsay sent you. :) I would strongly suggest you try their Salt & Pepper, Sea Salt, and the Mexican Cinnamon Chili (which should be available any day now), which are our favorites, but they have other varieties as well, including a 67% Dark, 75% Super Dark, Cocoa Nib, and Coffee Bean. Bars run $5 a piece, quite reasonable for such a decadent bar of chocolate.

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281 CommentsLeave a Comment →

1 2 3
  1. 1
    margie/mom
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 9:11 am

    Count me IN with first response! Mexican Cinnamon Chili Chocolate, OMG.
    You MUST take Robin on a tour when she visits you in November!

    Reply

  2. 2
    Laura
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 9:17 am

    Ooo, I got to do a factory tour at a chocolatier much like this one when I was up visiting in Seattle this spring and it was amazing (the smell really is intoxicating)! I’m so excited to here we have our own down here in the south!
    P.S. adore your blog, you always have great recipes and interesting tales to go with them! Thank you for sharing!

    Reply

  3. 3
    Christine
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 9:26 am

    Sounds awesome! I just moved away from Tennessee–wish I had known about them when I lived there!

    Reply

  4. 4
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 9:26 am

    Wow. I read the other day that there are only a handful of chocolate makers in the US that start from the actual cocoa bean and take it through the whole process to the actual completed chocolate in one spot. YOU were really lucky to be able to see that. Sounds scrumptious!

    Reply

  5. 5
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 9:26 am

    Oooh, please can Canadians play too? Those sound just divine!

    Reply

  6. 6
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 9:27 am
  7. 7
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 9:33 am

    MMM I’m drooling just thinking about it!

    Reply

  8. 8
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 9:36 am

    Ooooh, these look amazing! Salt and pepper chocolate sounds absolutely divine! :-)

    Reply

  9. 9
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 9:36 am

    and I posted on Twitter http://twitter.com/SabrinasCharm

    Reply

  10. 10
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 9:37 am
  11. 11
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 9:39 am

    You know I am SO SUPER JEALOUS of your tour but I like you, so I’ll get over it ;-)

    Just proves that great minds think alike because I came so very close to doing the same thing earlier this week before I put up my blog post about their new bar. I’m dying to get my hands on some more of it- that little sample on Saturday was not enough!

    Reply

  12. 12
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 9:42 am

    Mmmm… chocolate. Ever since I read Chocolate: A Bittersweet Saga of Dark and Light by Mort Rosenblum I’ve been kind of obsessed. I would love to try these bars.

    Reply

  13. 13
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 9:42 am

    I want to chop all of these up and make fabulous chocolate chip cookies! Thanks so much for sharing this unique experience / product.

    Reply

  14. 14
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 9:44 am
  15. 15
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 9:54 am
  16. 16
    Emily
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 9:54 am

    Oooh, the Cinnamon Chili sounds amazing! Much better than the cheap Trader Joe’s chocolate I have in the pantry now…

    Reply

  17. 17
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 9:57 am

    though it seems silly that people that buying local has become a trend, I am glad to see that people are rediscovering that they can get great goods in their very own town! these chocolate bars sound amazing!

    Reply

  18. 18
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 10:08 am

    I love chocolate combined with something salty! The salt and pepper combo really intruiges me. Not to mention the bars and wrappers are stunning!

    Reply

  19. 19
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 10:16 am

    A chocolate giveaway is a great way to start the day! Yum! I love the retro packaging and the flavors sound wonderful.

    Reply

  20. 20
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 10:19 am

    Here’s my tweet:

    @NicoleDula

    @loveandoliveoil is giving away some tasty Nashville chocolate http://bit.ly/36T5pq

    Reply

  21. 21
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 10:30 am

    i would love some chocolate. I even tweeted about it.
    http://twitter.com/ulikabbq

    Reply

  22. 22
    Kate Alson
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 10:32 am

    Yum! Who can turn down chocolate! And after eating all your yummo cupcakes if they get a Lindsay endorsement they are definitely delicious!

    Reply

  23. 23
    Laurie
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 10:41 am

    Mmmm, that sounds amazing! Send it to me :)

    Reply

  24. 24
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 10:43 am

    These. Look. Amazing!

    Reply

  25. 25
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 10:44 am

    Haha, a good friend of mine won 10 pounds of chocolate from these guys at the Tomato Festival in August…and is still trying to finish it! It would be such a crazy coincidence if I win chocolate from them too!

    Reply

  26. 26
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 10:45 am

    Anything chocolate, I must have. And you make it sound so sinfully delicious! YUM.

    Reply

  27. 27
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 10:47 am
  28. 28
    Sharon
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 10:47 am

    Living near the Mexican border, I can attest to the yumminess of Mexican chocolate so this will be really good!

    Reply

  29. 29
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 10:51 am

    These chocolate bars sound amazing! Love your website, I’m always inspired.

    Reply

  30. 30
    Ellie
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 11:03 am

    These look and sound amazing!

    Reply

  31. 31
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 11:07 am

    that chocolate looks delicious!

    Reply

  32. 32
    Mary
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 11:08 am

    Those chocolate bars sound absolutely delicious! Plus I’m a fan of anything with sea salt!

    Reply

  33. 33
    katie
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 11:09 am

    Holy yum! Spice and cinnamon and brown sugar? Count me in!

    Reply

  34. 34
    Nicole
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 11:14 am

    Yay for supporting local businesses!

    Reply

  35. 35
    Grace
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 11:16 am

    I would be a happy girl indeed if I won this one. :)

    Reply

  36. 36
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 11:19 am

    that’s mighty generous of you, and i must say–mexican-style cinnamon chili chocolate sounds like perfection itself. what a nifty experience–thanks for sharing!

    Reply

  37. 37
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 11:20 am

    I love Chocolate!

    Reply

  38. 38
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 11:27 am

    Awesome! I’m going to Nashville for the first time this weekend, actually!

    Reply

  39. 39
    Katie
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 11:28 am

    I might have to order myself some!

    Reply

  40. 40
    Dana Beth
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 11:36 am

    i’ve been dying to try Scott’s creations!

    pick me!!

    Reply

  41. 41
    Kim
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 11:36 am

    Goodness…how I do love “Hot” – spicy – Chocolate! My favorite thing when I lived in Nashville was the Hot Chocolate Paletas from Las Paletas!!! (something I dearly miss here in Good Old Boston!) It’s sad really, I don’t go a day without talking about Paletas (even have some amateur attempts in my fridge at this very moment mmmm…pear/ginger)

    I’m also so excited to see this post as I’m hosting a chocolate tasting in a few weeks and can’t wait to try to see if any of these delish buddies have made a Northern migration! (unless of course you pick me ;) )

    I’ve also tweeted a little bit about your contest in hopes others will bask in the chocolate splendor!! http://twitter.com/kbd4st

    Reply

  42. 42
    Lily
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 11:39 am

    I’d love to sample the sea salt chocolate! And what great packaging to boot.

    Reply

  43. 43
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 11:40 am

    O mah wonka! Please please please randomly pick me for the chocolate!

    Reply

  44. 44
    Kimberly Jahnke
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 11:55 am

    Yum Chocolate! Even better when it’s local & delicious!

    Reply

  45. 45
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 11:59 am

    The wonderful smell of this plant must be :) mexican cinnamon chili bar! OMG OMG!

    Reply

  46. 46
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 12:01 pm

    I would like to work in this factory ! :) i think sea salt chocolate delicious!!

    Reply

  47. 47
    Alexandra
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 12:02 pm

    I am in love with those chocolate wrappers. They are simply beautiful!

    Reply

  48. 48
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 12:07 pm

    Salt and Chocolate…What a wonderful combination! This chocoholic is going to have to place an order!

    Reply

  49. 49
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 12:09 pm

    and about it your giveaway on twitter = http://twitter.com/zarpandit88

    Reply

  50. 50
    Luciana Canaan
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 12:11 pm

    Did you accept international entries? :-)

    Reply

  51. 51
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 12:12 pm

    That label is adorable!! I like the whole brand they developed.

    Reply

  52. 52
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 12:13 pm
  53. 53
    Stephanie Schilling
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 12:15 pm

    Oh, yummmmm! What a wonderful giveaway! Thanks!

    Reply

  54. 54
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 12:16 pm

    I live in a tiny village, surrounded by nothing by farms for miles. While driving past huge fields of corn and cows on my way home from the supermarket (20 miles away), I wondered why I wasn’t buying local produce and meat. There are farm stands everywhere. Going to work on it.

    I love dark chocolate, especially with salty or savory additions–the cinnamon-chili bar sounds wonderful.

    Reply

  55. 55
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 12:19 pm

    Love some O&S Chocolate. Just tweeted it http://twitter.com/theeverett

    Reply

  56. 56
    Lauren
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 12:23 pm

    mmm chocolate

    Reply

  57. 57
    Alison
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 12:35 pm

    looks delicious! love the packaging.

    Reply

  58. 58
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 12:46 pm

    oh my.. that’s my kind of giveaway! fancy chocolate in cute wrappers.. i’m sold

    Reply

  59. 59
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 12:52 pm

    Yum! My favorite treat lately is chocolate. I love the pics from the tour! It is really cool to see how things come together into a final product. Thanks!

    Reply

  60. 60
    Tara
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 12:54 pm

    This sounds and looks absolutely heavenly. Their chocolate combinations seem genius.

    Reply

  61. 61
    Kate Price
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 1:14 pm

    I’m jealous! I’m in the wrong side of TN. I wish it was available in Memphis too! I guess I’ll just have to get some on my next time in Nashville or order online!

    Reply

  62. 62
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 1:17 pm

    I can’t resist chocolate. I always ask my fiance to bring home a “sweet treat” after he is out!

    Reply

  63. 63
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 1:18 pm
  64. 64
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 1:19 pm

    Delicious! I would love to try Salt & Pepper… I’m looking them up! :)

    Reply

  65. 65
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 1:21 pm

    I love love LOVE sweet and would love to try their salt and pepper bar. Also, their package design is gorgeous!

    Reply

  66. 66
    Jennifer Wilson
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 1:22 pm

    My mouth is watering – and the packaging makes it even better!

    Reply

  67. 67
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 1:49 pm

    I adore Olive & Sinclair. I’ve been spending far too much money on this lately; it would be awesome to win!

    Reply

  68. 68
    Jeanne
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 2:06 pm

    We consider Ghirardelli Chocolate local here in California, but I would love to try another local product.

    Reply

  69. 69
    Panya
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 2:14 pm

    Mmm, chocolate…

    Reply

  70. 70
    amanda
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 2:29 pm

    wow, what an awesome tour! and that packaging is a work of art! i think i’d save that first and then eat the chocolate. thanks for contest!

    Reply

  71. 71
    Elizabeth
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 2:49 pm

    Add me to the list–sounds delicious!!

    Reply

  72. 72
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 2:53 pm

    Thanks for introducing me to a great local artisan! I’m surprised I haven’t seen O&S chocolate before, but I’ll definitely keep my eyes open for it.

    Reply

  73. 73
    Alana
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 3:11 pm

    WHooohoo for Chocolate! Pick me! These are going to make great favors for our wedding out of town guests!

    Reply

  74. 74
    Carrie
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 3:14 pm

    Chocolate sounds delicious! And hooray for local! 3/50 Project, anyone?

    Reply

  75. 75
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 3:20 pm

    Oh, those sound so delicious! I’m impressed you can let go of a few to give away and not eat them yourself. :)

    Reply

  76. 76
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 3:33 pm

    I used to live in Nashville and looooove chocolate! In fact, I met my husband there! =) Hooray for local deliciousness!

    Reply

  77. 77
    Maria
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 4:01 pm

    Wow, I had no idea Nashville was such a foodie town. I’ll have to come by for chocolate and the tomato fest!

    Reply

  78. 78
    Amanda
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 4:20 pm

    Salt & Pepper?? I must taste this!

    Reply

  79. 79
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 4:21 pm

    Not only would we love to win the chocolate, but we love your blog and it’s posted on our blog http://www.catsbythesea.blogspot.com/

    Hurrah for chocolate!

    Reply

  80. 80
    ss
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 4:22 pm

    Yum…..

    Reply

  81. 81
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 4:35 pm

    The wrapping for the chocolate is just lovely. Pretty wrapping makes anything taste extra good. We eat with our eyes first.

    Reply

  82. 82
    ikkinlala
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 4:40 pm

    I would love to enter, please, if Canadians may – it looks like they have some unique flavours.

    Reply

  83. 83
    Allison
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 4:47 pm

    they look AMAZING. I would love to win – thanks for the giveaway!

    Reply

  84. 84
    Dani
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 4:53 pm

    Oooooh, the flavors all sound so divine! Wouldn’t they be wonderful in truffles! (Which I just happen to be making as Christmas gifts this year.) I’ll be bookmarking their website for future use. Thanks so much for the chance at the giveaway!

    Reply

  85. 85
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 5:06 pm

    BUHHHH, this sounds amazing. I’ve GOT to buy some Mexican Cinnamon Chili. Immediately. Enter me, please!

    Reply

  86. 86
    Cheryl W
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 5:06 pm

    Please count me it. The sea salt sounds so good. I am a self confessed salt-aholic and this sounds like a great combo.

    Reply

  87. 87
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 5:09 pm

    That sounds amazing!! MMMMM mexican cinnamon chili – now i’m drooling. if i don’t win, i might have to take a road trip to get some. :)

    Reply

  88. 88
    Dani
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 5:17 pm

    Oops, I don’t know how to do a link to my tweet about the giveaway!

    Reply

  89. 89
    Jenn
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 5:28 pm

    I’m such a sucker for good chocolate. This sounds amazing; you’re lucky to have it as a local business.

    Reply

  90. 90
    Julie
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 5:31 pm

    I can’t wait to taste one of these bars! The salt and pepper version sounds wonderful!

    Reply

  91. 91
    Felicia
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 5:54 pm

    Win or lose I’ll definitely be looking them up next time I’m in town for a hockey game. Ha.

    Reply

  92. 92
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 6:02 pm

    Love, love, love the new Mexican chocolate bar! The hot chocolate made from it at the Fall Fest was the best I’ve had.

    Awesome contest!

    Reply

  93. 93
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 6:11 pm

    *raises hand* me! I want to win! So excited about this chocolate, and I love the fact that it’s local and so well crafted. Great thing to come to Nashville.

    Reply

  94. 94
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 6:19 pm

    Wow, how exciting! Pick me! I remember going round the schaffen burger factory and it was just heavenly!

    Reply

  95. 95
    Carrie
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 6:22 pm

    I am always up for trying new chocolate

    Reply

  96. 96
    Kelly Dee
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 6:25 pm

    The labels are so pretty!

    Reply

  97. 97
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 6:27 pm

    Now, the trick would be resisting the temptation to literally tear into the packaging. If I could exercise just a modicum of restraint, I’d not only have chocolatey goodness to enjoy, but pretty, pretty packaging to pop into a little frame.

    Reply

  98. 98
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 6:28 pm

    stone ground artisan chocolate, oh my! makes me think of the Juliette Binoche in ‘Chocolat.’ and Mexican Cinnamon Chili — fantastic!

    cheers,

    *heather*

    Reply

  99. 99
    Doreen from Virginia
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 6:31 pm

    I can’t even imagine how divine it must taste. Chocolate is my biggest weakness…I can never say no. Everything I bake always taste better when it’s made with chocolate.

    Reply

  100. 100
    Rachel Ricchio
    Posted On October 29, 2009 at 6:32 pm

    oooo the things i could do with this chocolate :)

    Reply

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