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Chocolate deRosenda is named for Rosenda, Fredy’s maternal grandmother, the family’s strong-willed matriarch. Fredy is from Oaxaca, in Southern Mexico. He was raised on a farm in San Juan del Estado, in the hills outside of Oaxaca City. Rosenda was from Tlaxcala, and spoke Nauhatl as a child, the ancient Aztec language from which the word xocolatl or chocolate comes. Fredy has over 15 years’ experience working in the food and hospitality industry.

Shanti and Fredy met dancing salsa in Santa Cruz in 2002. They have two young sons and live in Sausalito. Shanti is a fourth generation Marin resident.

During many trips to Fredy’s hometown in Oaxaca, they learned from Fredy’s mother how to make the beloved hot chocolate that they indulged in every day while there. They would make a special trip to the open-air market in Oaxaca City to buy the cacao, bring it home, roast it outside over a wood fire on a clay comal, then stone-grind it and hand shape it into bars. Every time they visited, they would make as much homemade chocolate as they could possibly carry home to last them between trips, and to distribute to friends and family as gifts. In 2016 they decided to turn their shared love of food culture and authentic Oaxacan chocolate into a family business.