For more than 50 years, three generations of the Krautheim family have been crafting the finest quality premium artisan chocolates. It all began on the island of Oahu, Hawaii with little Gertie Han (later to become Gertie Krautheim), a precocious seven-year-old with an uncanny curiosity for how chocolate candy was made, as she closely examined a Babe Ruth caramel nut bar. This passionate desire to learn stayed with her through young adulthood, as she honed her baking skills and gradually experimented with her real love—chocolate!
Gertie fell in love with Carl Krautheim, a man who shared her love of chocolate! They were a perfect match!
After Pearl Harbor was bombed and neighbors gathered at the Krautheim home during a black-out period, Gertie - instinctively knowing that chocolate was a comforting and calming confection - made a batch of chocolates and shared them with her friends and neighbors, who happily devoured them and smiled during this difficult period. Later, Gertie continued learning and experimenting with chocolate in a small air-conditioned room that Carl built for her. She would cook late into the night perfecting many of her recipes.
Carl and Gertie tested a variety of the world’s finest chocolate in order to produce the perfect dark, velvety truffle. They both enjoyed chocolate made in the French tradition, with a strong, rich chocolate “bite.” Gertie also developed rich, buttery caramels as well as delightful creams, all drenched in French chocolate. Their success in producing the finest, world-class chocolates is due to their unwavering insistence on using only the highest quality ingredients. Gertie was determined to create the perfect confection that would make a chocolate lover (or first-time chocolate taster) sigh, “Ohhhh! Chocolate!”
Eventually, Carl and Gertie moved to the mainland, opening a shop on Mercer Island, Washington. The shop has been open for over 30 years and is now a family tradition for several generations of Mercer Islanders. While Gertie created her luscious chocolates, Carl generously handed out chocolate samples to the delight of each store visitor. This tradition continues today, as the family delights in making all guests’ visits to the shop a delicious experience!