As Winter melts into Spring, we at Sira Naturals reflect upon the hard work and dedication of our amazing staff.
The Sira Marketing Team sat down with our Chef and Infusions Manager, Anne Wolf, to hear her story and learn about her newest creation; a premium infused Dark Chocolate Bar!
What is your role at Sira?
I’m the Chef and Infusions Manager at Sira Naturals.
What was your journey into the culinary world like?
It has been a windy and diverse journey, which has benefited me in ways I never expected. I studied Zoology at University of California Santa Barbara before I was drawn to the kitchen on a professional level. After training in the culinary arts at Culinary Institute of America in St. Helena, California, I spent six years working in restaurants across the country. I specialized in Middle Eastern and Eastern Mediterranean cuisines, which taught me to use spices and aromatics in nuanced yet effective ways. I then led recipe development for cookbooks at America’s Test Kitchen, where I learned a tremendous amount through research and experimentation. Working in cannabis-infused cuisine feels like the ultimate culmination of all of these experiences.
What inspired you to start infusing food with cannabis?
I started experimenting with cannabis infusions in college. It all started with weed brownies, of course, but I remember making to a chocolate layer cake with mocha buttercream and raspberry filling for a party. It was really delicious…so delicious that people kept going back for more, ate too much, and the party was over by 8 pm. Everyone’s excitement about this elegant dessert made me realize that weed brownies were just the beginning (and that microdosing means you can enjoy more!).
What’s your philosophy as it pertains to cannabis-infused cuisine?
I feel very strongly that one should savor the experience of eating their cannabis-infused treats, not just the after-effects. I’m a chef first and foremost, so it’s important to me that people enjoy the food I make regardless of its cannabis content. It needs to be visually enticing, crafted from quality ingredients, with balanced flavors and appealing textures. There’s just no reason for anyone to choke down skunky brownies or grainy chocolate bars in order to consume cannabis.
Are you passionate about chocolate/confections? Why?
I love chocolate. It is a sexy ingredient to work with that can dramatically transform without the addition of any other ingredients. It’s bold and independent but can also embrace other flavors seamlessly. I love the challenge crafting great chocolate presents and the gratifying snap and sheen it rewards you with. But more than anything, I love eating it.
For patients who may be inexperienced with chocolate edibles, why should they try this one?
This chocolate bar is made with silky-smooth Belgian dark chocolate. It has a 54% cocoa content, which means it boasts a roasted chocolate flavor with subtle vanilla notes and a well-rounded taste. It’s not overly bitter or harsh like some dark chocolates can be. It doesn’t taste like weed; it’s a delicious chocolate bar, regardless of the cannabis content.
What excites you most about launching the dark chocolate bar at Sira?
On a personal level, this is an exciting career milestone for me. I’ve been tailoring my recipes and experimenting with cannabis cuisine for years, so it’s very exciting to finally get to share this labor of love. But it’s also an exciting time for all consumers of marijuana infused products. You’re going to see more and more products released into the market and you’ll have the opportunity to learn what you like, what you don’t like, and demand the highest quality products.
What makes this chocolate bar special?
It is made with the highest quality ingredients, from the beautifully grown cannabis to the rich Belgian chocolate we use. It is hand-crafted by an incredible team of passionate chefs that take so much pride in the quality of work they do. It’s really made with love, start to finish. You can’t get better than that.
Any recommendations for additional ways to enjoy the chocolate bar?
This makes the ultimate s’more. I’m so excited to bring one on a camping trip this spring. It would also make a decadent chocolate fondue or chocolate chip cookie, chopped up and used as chips.
How do you envision Sira’s chocolate line will evolve in the future?
This is just the beginning! You can expect to see milk and white chocolate bars in the future, as well as flavors such as peppermint, dark chocolate sea salt, or even cinnamon-spice. I’m also hoping to expand our chocolate line to include bonbons and truffles, so stay tuned!