Life after Hollywood is so sweet now for chocolatier
Moving from a career in the cut-throat movie business to the artisan ateliers of the chocolatier is one hell of a leap -- yet this is exactly what Californian-born Karen Gordon did almost four years ago.
Gordon, whose great-grandfather is from Roscommon, moved there in 2006 after working in the movie business for about 35 years.
"I was a motion picture production accountant and I worked with all the major Hollywood studios," said Gordon. "My husband wanted to retire. He has family in Wales and we have a daughter in Dublin so it made sense to move closer to family."
Unlike her husband, Gordon was not ready to retire. "Having my own company was something I always wanted to do," she said.
"Having spent my life in accounting, I had a creative side that I had never explored. Confectionery was a hobby which I'd had since I was very young. I used to spoil my three brothers with various concoctions."
In the summer of 2010, Gordon turned her confectionery hobby into her day job when she set up the Roscommon Chocolate Company.
She sells 21 different flavours of truffles -- from cafe latte to passion fruit to licorice and coconut cream. The flavours sold at any one time will depend on the season of the year.
"One of our most popular truffles is a recipe of my grandmother's -- a chewy buttery caramel truffle," said Gordon.
She sells her chocolates to retailers and artisan shops such as Fallon & Byrne in Dublin and Kate's Kitchen in Sligo.
"The demand for our chocolates has exceeded my expectations," said Gordon. "Sales have more than doubled over the last year -- we probably sold about 2,000 boxes of chocolate. The Irish definitely have a sweet tooth."