Day Off In LA: Inside Mast Brothers Chocolate Factory

I love the holidays – eating all the food, spending time with family and friends and escaping the daily routine. But best of all, Kevin and I got a bonus day off from work right before the break. So I decided to see what fun activity we could do. That’s when I remembered Mast Brothers – the hipster chocolate company founded in Brooklyn by brothers Rick and Michael Mast — and its new downtown factory and tour.

Kevin is ready for the tour!

The company opened a modern (and stunning) factory in the trendy Downtown Los Angeles arts district just a few months ago. And it is definitely an informative tour.  It starts off with a tasting of a raw cacao bean. I’ve seen cacao pods and even the roasted nibs used to make chocolate. But neither Kevin or I tasted it in pure form, which they do on the tour.

One of the raw cacao beans – straight from the pod. It’s looks nasty, but wonder how it tastes?

Kevin gives his review of the cacao pod. Guess we have an answer!

I first heard of Mast from a local chocolatier at a food festival last May, who pretty much snubbed the brand for its lack of quality and flavor.  Plus, they said they cared too much about the pretty packaging. I reluctantly tried the seemingly ‘evil brand’ at the festival, and you know what? I loved it. And yes, I’m a sucker for pretty packaging.

Love the packaging, which is wrapped all by hand.

The nearly 6,000-square foot space is the company’s largest showroom. And certainly was popular the day we went with what seemed like thousands of kids with their parents. Though, in reality, it was like 6 kids on the tour.

The tour is very popular for parents (and many, many kids!)

The tour costs $10 for adults and is free for children under the age of 10 years old (which probably explains the kid thing). Visitors are able to see the entire chocolate making process, which ends with a sample of about 6 different chocolate bars and their signature chocolate beer (basically a cooler way to say chocolate soda… no alcohol in this beer).

Chocolate beer – a sour and sweet tasting soda that you can also buy at their gift shop.

Each cube has a different part of the chocolate making process – the fanciest factory I’ve ever been to

You can have just about as many samples as you want (when nobody is looking!)

The tour is pretty short – about 30 minutes total. But makes for a fun day off activity.  And the best part?  You exit through the gift shop! We ended up buying a stack of chocolate bars and couldn’t resist the freshly baked chocolate chip cookies, which they walked right by us while on the tour… Good sales technique!

I’m happy with the purchases

After the tour, Kevin and I had lunch at nearby Zinc Cafe.  The place has a gourmet food shop and strong coffee. I wouldn’t say it was the best lunch we’ve ever had, but the atmosphere of the cafe makes up for it.

Time for more shopping! I check out all the local goods in the connected store in the cafe.

Veggie burger, mac n’ cheese and guacamole.

If it’s a warm day, head out to the covered patio and try to forget about all that work you don’t need to do. After all, it’s your day off!


Mast Chocolate 
Open 11 am – 7 pm daily
Factory tours every hour, $10 for adults

Zinc Cafe & Market
Open Mon-Sat from 7 am – 12 am and Sunday from 7 am – 10 pm
Located just a short drive from Mast (and technically walkable…but it is LA)

Day Off In LA: Inside Mast Brothers Chocolate Factory
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Day Off In LA: Inside Mast Brothers Chocolate Factory
Looking for a fun activity on your day off of work? Look no further than the Mast Brothers chocolate tour. You'll get a tour of the factory in the trendy downtown arts district and sample plenty of chocolate.

1 Comment

  1. Really enjoyed reading about your adventures. Great!


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