As Head Chocolatier, Dany Kamkhagi, enjoys crafting delectable chocolate creations at Mostly Chocolate. Nearly two decades ago, the award-winning chocolate shop was originally started by his parents, David and Rina Kamkhagi. Rina, who grew up in Lebanon, learned the art of crafting delicious Lebanese dishes and pastries. Now, her son, Dany, is carrying on the family’s tradition.
What was it like growing up with parents part of a chocolate-making business?
“It started when I was in high school, as a hobby for [my mom.] It didn’t seem that out of the ordinary because my mom and family in general is just obsessed with food. Whenever they take on a project like this, you 100% believe them, because they’re crazy enough to do it. You’re just there to try everything. I associate November and December since I was in high school as busy season. When we were working out of the house, every part of the house had some sort of chocolate production on the first floor. We all had our jobs.”
How did you develop a passion for making chocolate?
“We would go to New York every summer, and go to the Fancy Food show. [My mom] purposely wanted me to meet a chocolatier that had a booth there that year. I met him on the last day of the show. He said, ‘if you ever want an apprenticeship,’ this is my number, you’re more than welcome to.’ I took him up on it. My girlfriend at the time, now my wife, pushed me to. The second I walked in [to his chocolate shop] I was obsessed. To see it produced with that amount of confidence and passion, was something that really hit my heart. The way they were working with chocolate. It was like they had a relationship with chocolate.”
What’s your favorite dessert?
My favorite dessert is just something with a little hazelnut in it. So, it could be a gelato. When I went to Italy with my wife, I would stop at every gelato place that looked good. I would get a hazelnut gelato. That’s how I would rate which gelato place was the best, just off their hazelnut gelato. I do love a simple dessert with a one-note flavor.”