If you're going to make chocolate, you may as well make it the best chocolate EVER.
Mayana Chocolate is run by husband and wife team Daniel and Tamara Herskovic, who are as in love with chocolate as they are with each other. Daniel takes world class chocolate, adds his culinary finesse and creates the edible treasure of a Mayana chocolate. Tamara brings her interior architecture schooling and event planning career to design and radiate the experience of Mayana. She fashions the chocolate packaging and custom designs and brings warm communication to all clientele.
They formed a partnership both in life and the culinary world after initially meeting while working a dining event in Chicago. Daniel remembers being instantly won over by Tamara’s smile as she passed him in the hallway that evening.
Tamara later went on to start a very successful event planning company in Chicago with well known clients in entertainment, politics, and industry. More recently, she followed through with another passion and received her 200 hour yoga teacher certification - eventually starting a yoga studio in Spooner, Wisconsin, Mayana's future home.
Daniel had been busy building a chef career at top restaurants in three of America's premier food cities: New York, San Francisco, and Chicago. He then launched his own private catering business and later, with Tamara, began to create elaborately orchestrated dinners for some of Chicago’s most well known residents.
After several years in the business, he decided that his catering customers would enjoy a post-dessert memento to take home. He loved the challenge that chocolate presented: difficult to temper and mercurial in texture, chocolate is a living ingredient at the whims of agriculture and processing techniques. Techniques Daniel set out to master. Tragically his first truffles grew to the size of golf balls, as layer after layer of ingredients poured onto them. First he needed some help from the Masters.
He sought out and studied with the great chocolate luminaries of the United States and France: Andrew Shotts, Norman Love, Franck Kestener, Christophe Morel, Jerome Landrieu, and Lionel Clement. After countless hours of training, Daniel’s truffles became precisely sized and richly focused with inventive flavor and texture. Tamara helped Daniel adorn his creations with beautiful designs and they entered the Chicago Luxury Chocolate Salon in 2008. They went home with 7 awards that day, including “Best in Salon” and “Most Gifted Chocolatier". Mayana had arrived.
When not busy with the long, exacting process of creating their chocolate gems, Tamara and Daniel exercise their passion for travel and world culture. They recently journeyed to Spain to walk the 350 mile Camino de Santiago pilgrimage route together, affirming that their love for each other could outlast 700,000 steps.
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