Finding unique products that delight your customers is one of the goals (and perks) of buying for your store, and at Faire, we are proud to bring together high-quality global brands of all sizes and types. That’s why it’s especially rewarding when two independent brands collaborate to create new and imaginative offerings you never thought were possible. That’s exactly what happened behind the scenes of the Momofuku x Raaka Chocolate trio, which features a delectable selection of chocolate bars: White Chocolate Crispy Rice, Miso Potato Chip, and Chili Chocolate Crunch.
Famous for its contemporary Asian American favorites dreamed up by two-Michelin-starred chef David Chang, Momofuku is a trailblazing flavor creator of everything from noodles to seasoning salts. Raaka is a Brooklyn-based chocolatier that thoughtfully and sustainably sources its single-origin unroasted cacao beans to feature in flavors like Pink Sea Salt, Oat Milk, Coconut Milk, and more.
We sat down with the vice president of brand and marketing at Momofuku, Ryan Healey, and the director of sales and partnerships at Raaka, Orissa Agnihotri, to hear more about their tasty creations and how they dreamed up this tantalizing trio, now available for wholesale purchase exclusively on Faire.
A serendipitous introduction leads to a tasty collaboration
“Our meet-cute story is that Momofuku was hosting a Faire gathering in New York,” says Orissa. “That’s where I met Ryan.” Ryan was actually on the hunt for a partner who might want to create a holiday collaboration, and he and Orissa quickly realized their brands were destined to do delicious things together.
“Raaka and Momofuku have similar values in [that] everything is made in small batches in Brooklyn,” says Ryan. “It felt aligned for two New York City businesses to come together and make something cool.” Unsurprisingly, it was Momofuku’s cult-favorite chili crisp that really got their gears going.
“The way we came up with the idea was unconventional. We are never afraid of mixing bold flavors together,” says Ryan. “We thought chocolate could be a very interesting pairing for chili crunch. There’s spicy chocolate in some cultures, and Mexican chilies in our crunch pair well with Raaka’s dark chocolate.” They got to work testing batches and retesting combinations that felt worthy of their collaboration. “The Raaka team was very patient with us as we tried different amounts of chili to find just the right balance and ensure the quality we expect at Momo,” says Ryan. “The end result was definitely shocking but ultimately quite delicious.”
Selling out twice and adding two more mouthwatering flavors
Once the limited edition Chili Chocolate Crunch bar took off—and sold out twice—they created two more collaborations for a trifecta of flavors. “The OG Chili Chocolate Crunch is my favorite, but it’s surprising how well the savory flavors work well together,” Orissa says.
The second bar features the umami of miso with a crunch from potato chips. At first, the miso was almost “too shocking,” so they added salty, crushed potato chips to the dark chocolate and landed on a winner. The last one drifts back to the sweet side and presents a riff on the Momofuku Milk Bar Pie. “It’s a long-standing dessert that people love at our noodle bar: caramelized white chocolate pie with crispy rice on top,” says Ryan. In this case, they folded the crispy rice right into the bar for a satisfying crunch in every bite. “It’s super creamy with a great texture from the puffed rice and waffle cone cookies,” says Orissa.
The two brands couldn’t have been happier to have found each other—and these flavor combinations. Tapping into Faire as the connector, they championed each other’s brands and introduced their audiences to both of their stories and products in a uniquely effective way. Together, the two companies became greater than the sum of their parts.
“It was so much fun collaborating with another Faire brand,” says Orissa. “We love to work with like-minded food brands like Momo who put so much thought and care into what they do.” For those looking to spark some of that Momofuku x Raaka magic, Ryan has a suggestion: “My advice for other brands is to ensure you’re aligned at the beginning and stay on the same page about how the process will work. We owe a lot to Raaka as we tinkered with the bar, but feel the product is really great and representative of both Momo and Raaka.”
By playing to each company’s strengths, the two creative powerhouses dreamed up three unique new products that will surely fly off shelves. “We were really able to take the best of what each brand does and blend them together to create something special and unique,” says Orissa.