Dandelion Chocolate, Japan
4 Chome-14-6 Kuramae, Taito, Tokyo 111-0051, Japan
San Francisco’s ‘bean-to-bar’ chocolatier Dandelion Chocolate has brought its factory-inspired aesthetic to Japan – its first international outpost – and the result is pretty sweet.
In Tokyo’s artsy-craftsy Kuramae, the Mission District chocolate maker’s iconic red bricks have given way to an industrial warehouse conversion, but the polished timber and chalkboard signage remain, albeit with a refined twist.
The 1950s space has been artfully made over into an all-in-one chocolate factory in a way that balances the rustic integrity of the building with a contemporary crispness. Polished concrete, exposed metal beams and fluorescent lighting reference its industrial origins, while sweeping glass walls, stainless steel work surfaces and glossy timber create a modern vibe.
PUDDLE and Moya Design have crafted a crisp warehouse Tokyo identity for bean-to-bar chocolatier Dandelion Chocolate.
Like its San Francisco predecessor, the space captures the entire chocolate-making experience – from the sorting and storage of cocoa beans through to the production benches where the bars are packaged. A loft-style cafe allows customers to enjoy a dessert while watching chocolate tasting classes in an adjoining room, while the ground-floor seating offers an unobstructed view of the chocolate being produced.
The use of natural timber, greenery and hand-written signage throughout lends a natural, artisan note to the design that parallels the carefully crafted nature of the chocolate on display, while connecting the space with the large park at its doorstep.
It’s stylish, elegant and awash with the scent of cocoa. Willy Wonka would be envious.