Jacquie Moser, who was first profiled in our newsletter one year ago, will celebrate the two-year anniversary of her business, Radiantly Raw Kitchen, in April. Since Valentines Day is coming up soon, and few things are more synonymous with the occasion than chocolate, we asked her for an update on her latest flavors and insights on how her business has changed and grown. (Ranch Foods Direct stocks her full line of healthy, beautiful chocolates in the specialty freezer case.)

NEW FLAVORS: Jacquie is coming out with several new flavors just in time for Valentine’s Day. “We’re doing a spicy orange truffle that’s really cool,” she says. The “orange heat” truffle (pictured) is made with hawthorne syrup from Anna’s Apothecary, another local business. “The berries are known for their medicinal properties. Studies show it increases circulation, warms up your body, cleans out your arteries and lowers cholesterol. The berries add an earthiness to the truffle, but we also use a little cayenne and chipotle, two more ingredients that are good for circulation. Then we add the delicious orange flavor.” She’s also coming out with a new Switchback Coffee truffle that tastes just like a cappuccino, “so creamy and good.” For carrot cake fans, she’s introducing a truffle on February 13 that evokes the flavors of cream cheese frosting – without the cream cheese. How does she do it? She starts with raw cashews, tempering their natural sweetness with a little lemon juice, and adds creamy coconut fat. To sample a wide range of her current flavors, pick up her “splurge” item – available at Ranch Foods Direct – the 14-piece premium truffle pack, which typically sells for around $30. (Please check with the store for specific prices.)

PARTNERSHIPS & PAIRINGS: Jacquie collaborates with other small local businesses whenever possible. For example, she’s teaming up with Fossil Brewing Co. to offer a special chocolate beer on February 13. Since last’s year inaugural Colorado Springs Craft Week, her chocolates have been featured in countless pairings with local craft beers as well as with locally made wine, whiskey and even moonshine. “When you have a high quality chocolate, it really plays with the complex notes in the beverage and changes the flavor you experience from the alcohol,” she explains. Barrel-aged brews like the ones from Paradox Brewing make a particularly good match because of their depth. Tasters will have the chance to sample these effects during Colorado Collective’s Valentine’s Day party on February 14 downtown at the Piano Warehouse, where Jacquie will offer a variety of pairings at her booth. Tickets for the second anniversary event are on sale now at the Colorado Collective website. “It’s a gorgeous event center and a stunning atmosphere,” Jacquie says.

ON THE POPULARITY OF SUSTAINABLE SWEETS: “People have been very receptive to our products, and the community has been so welcoming,” Jacquie notes. She has placed a special focus on sustainable sourcing, even hiring a local college student to help track down sustainable, ethical ingredients. “That’s been a goal since we started. If we can get something locally, we will always choose local.”

Find Jacquie Mosher’s Radiantly Raw products online at RadiantlyRawKitchen.com or on Facebook or call her at 719-749-6176.