The origins of JK Chocolate’s sinfully rich chocolate sauce began innocently enough: Preston Hollow neighbors and longtime friends Julie Tobolowsky and Karleen Kusin bestowed the homemade sauces as gifts for their kids’ schoolteachers every year. With four children each, Tobolowsky and Kusin had ample time to perfect their recipe. The teachers began to ask for more chocolate sauce, Kusin says, but there was the business of raising children.
“When we hit the empty-nest phase of life, we knew it was time to go all-in, and that’s when JK Chocolate was born,” Kusin says. Now, two years later, the owners of JK Chocolate call themselves “chocolate executive officers,” and they’re making more than their original chocolate sauce. While entertaining friends last year, Tobolowsky and Kusin baked bite-size cookies — chocolate chips lightly covered with a thin, crunchy layer of dough — just for fun.
“We made sliders and other bite-size appetizers for friends, and then we experimented by making the smallest cookies we could possibly make, and it got a little competitive,” Tobolowsky recalls. When JK officially introduced Microchip cookies, the response was so positive that Katie Couric featured the women on her daytime talk show. Now there’s a lineup of nine tiny cookie varieties, including the new snickerdoodle and sugar cookies. Four-inch pound cakes, which come in flavors such as chocolate and cinnamon streusel, are other recent additions. Kusin says that since opening a retail shop within their commercial kitchen on Lovers Lane this year, more than a few customers have rushed in looking to satisfy a chocolate fix. But Tobolowsky says the addictive nature of their sweets does have one pitfall.
“When I go to see my grandbabies, I can’t arrive empty-handed,” she says with a laugh. “They’re always hoping that I’m bringing them cookies, too.”
4710 W. Lovers
Price range: Party favors $3-$12; tins and gift boxes $14 and up
Hours: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Friday
Did you know? The metal work inside the shop is the handiwork of Julie’s husband, sculptor George Tobolowsky. His exhibition ”Discover the Menorah” was featured in the Museum of Biblical Art.
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