Cacao Cafe, the retail outpost of chocolate maker Cacao Atlanta Chocolate Co., will permanently close due to the effects of the coronavirus pandemic. In the chocolatier’s announcement, owners Kristen Hard and Caline Jarudi attributed the decision to several different factors stemming from the global health crisis.
Jarudi, the shop’s on-site managing partner, has high-risk immunocompromised status, so she was unable to work at the shop due to her increased risk in the event of exposure to COVID-19. The company has also been unable to secure financial assistance in the form of a PPP loan or leniency from the cafe’s landlord. The former Cacao Cafe space is now available for sub-lease, including all fixtures, furniture and equipment.
Despite closing its cafe after nine years, Cacao will continue to make chocolate and focus on delivery and pickup, with online ordering available at cacaoatlanta.com. The company has donated its extra unopened boxes of gloves to the Emory hospital system and is working to provide complimentary chocolate to first responders.