Meet the Team Tuesday: Kayleigh

August 21, 2018

Meet the Team Tuesday: Kayleigh

indi chocolate is a small, woman-owned business located in Pike Place Market. Community is at the heart of our businesses. We strive to be a space where our team not only enjoys coming into work everyday, but feels appreciated and open to share their own ideas and creativity. We believe in supporting the personal growth of our team.

#MeetTheTeamTuesday is about celebrating the hard working, talented members of our team. Once a month, we want to introduce a member of our team, someone we want to honor and appreciate. This month we are so happy to get to know our Cafe Manager Kayleigh!

Kayleigh started at indi chocolate as a barista in late February before stepping up to a leadership role in early April. Having been a coffee professional for 4 years, Kayleigh has found working at indi chocolate has been an incredible opportunity:

“Nowhere else has really given me this much room to create. Everyone is willing to hear out my sometimes off-the-wall ideas, and this collaboration has given us the chance to share some one-of-a-kind experiences with people.”

We are happy to have had the opportunity to take some time to sit down and pick Kayleigh’s brain about the world of coffee and how it fits into their life. Kayleigh exudes a passion for coffee and often talks about it in such a way that connects you to a feeling or memory:

“Coffee can be as simple or complex as you want it to be. It can connect you to something emotionally. You can have a cup of coffee diner style, with cream and sugar like my grandma used to like it. Or you can bask in the flavors a chemex coffee or single origin espresso provides. That feeling of having a warm cup of coffee in your hands can transport you to a specific time and place in your life.”

Seattle is well known for its coffee culture. Being a cafe in Pike Place Market we are presented with all sorts of people. We have regulars who choose us for their morning coffee on their way to work, La Colombe enthusiasts and of course plenty of visitors to our city. Kayleigh’s goal in the for indi chocolate is to make things that are simply delicious but also entice a more refined pallet.

We use homemade syrups, single origin chocolate and infusions in our drinks that highlight the team’s creativity. Kayleigh has crafted some amazing specials for the cafe, like the Smoky Cold Brew which featured our BBQ Spice Rub for Memorial Day as well as the Full Spectrum Spritzer  featuring a handmade rainbow ice cube packed with fresh flavors for Pride Weekend! These are some of the many examples of how indi chocolate separates itself from other Seattle coffee shops.

The coffee and chocolate duo is probably one of the best parts about indi chocolate. Single origin coffee has made its name in recent years, but single origin chocolate is still on the rise. “I love both the similarities and the differences. I love how much they both have in common [like] where in the world they’re grown and the journey they took from one part of the world to another.” When Kayleigh joined us at indi chocolate she designed and wrote a coffee and chocolate pairing class highlighting the two.

“The chocolate maker and I spent time in close quarters while developing this class; just enthusiastically sharing our expertise in our subjects. We just started asking questions back and forth about what we wanted to know that the other one knew about. Then there was a lot of trial and error. We had to try a lot of things and explore both worlds.”

Our Chocolate and Coffee Pairing class is one of the many we have at our Factory & Cafe. Kayleigh came into our world with very little knowledge on chocolate and now teaches this class alongside a chocolate professional every other week. Kayleigh’s favorite part about the class is “when somebody’s eyes light up with recognition and curiosity. When they want to ask questions and learn, I get excited. Whether or not I have the answer, it’s a thrill. I also love when someone tastes something that I haven’t noticed before and I get to experience something new with them.”

Quick Facts about Kayleigh:

Favorite indi chocolate Drink - sipping chocolate

Favorite Chocolate Product - nib inclusions & mocha beans

Favorite way to drink coffee - straight up espresso