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There’s only one thing better than chocolate: Locally made chocolate. Learn more about this Cincinnati-based business and the passionate chocolate lovers behind it.

Maverick Chocolate Company is making delectable, locally-made chocolate right in its store.
Maverick Chocolate Company is making delectable, locally-made chocolate right in its store.

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, indulge in a little local love with Maverick Chocolate Company.

The craft chocolate-making business is owned by Paul and Marlene Piton, who are themselves, passionate chocolate lovers. In their shop, the Pictons produce chocolate bars starting with the cocoa beans and working their way to a finished bar.

“When we discovered the joys of craft chocolate, we set out to bring that joy to Cincinnati,” says Paul.

Paul is a mechanical engineer with extensive aviation experience. When Paul was traveling around the world as an engineer, he always returned home to his wife with new and interesting chocolates from around the world. However, he no longer went out on business trips in 2013 and the two no longer had their exotic supply of chocolate.

When they couldn’t find hand-crafted chocolate in the Queen City, they decided they wanted to go out and start making it on their own. “Marlene is a graduate of the ecole chocolat bean-to-bar chocolate program,” adds Paul.

After her graduation, the Pictons started making chocolate. Following several rounds of trial and error, they invited friends to come over and check it out. Once the verdict was in and their friends were impressed, the Pictons were encouraged to pursue a career as chocolate makers.

Maverick Chocolate Company opened its doors to the public in July 2014 and they’re already expanding. Paul says they are not only regularly producing new flavors but they are expanding their front counter and adding seating in order to create a more café-like experience. “We also expect to remain open later into the evening as well,” he says.

When guests come in to visit Maverick Chocolate Company, Paul says that he wants customers to watch the chocolate being made and asking as many questions that pop into their heads.

Visit them in the south side of Findlay Market, at 129 W. Elder Street in Cincinnati. Check them out online at or like them on Facebook.