Lauren Gockley, the Director of Edibles at Coda Signature, spent a lifetime working in restaurants, then ten years ago she transitioned exclusively into chocolates. Gockley’s passion took her to France, Paris, and all around the world studying chocolate and pastries. Lauren returned to the states and worked for Thomas Keller Bouchon bakery making Bon Bons for their end of meal deserts, and platters. Lauren transitioned out of restaurants and poured her focus on being a raw vegan chocolatier.
“I was becoming very intimate with the cacao bean, the flavor profiles, the origin, and the history. Having a new understanding and appreciation for chocolate as a superfood and seeing the joy that it brings people, not only on a flavor level but on a health level,” Lauren says. “I was a raw vegan chocolatier for about four and a half years and transitioned out, to take what I’ve learned from the fine-dining world and the raw vegan world, and wanted to create my own type of experience with chocolate. With that, I started to learn a lot more about what the world of cannabis looked like at that stage.”
It was 2014. Gockley was still in New York but very aware of the legalization of cannabis and what that might mean for chocolate. There was an opportunity growing through edibles and seeing that there was a gap in quality products that featured the Cannabis with quality ingredients, beautiful packaging, and the overall user experience. “And very soon after it became clear to me that this was where I wanted to make my next steps,” Gockley says. “I met the two Co-founders Mark and Elizabeth, and it was apparent that our visions were very much in line about the type of products we wanted to create, the type of brand we wanted to build, and overall focus around ‘quality longevity and luxury.’”
Lauren met her life partner, Brian, moved out of New York to the small city of Trinidad in Colorado. There was a bit of a culture shock, but it gave Lauren the space she needed to create. For one year, she experimented with flavor profiles, and the team all focused on what products they wanted to bring to market, and what their brands would represent. Writing their core values, their mission statement, and laying a strong foundation for the company that was blooming.
March 2016 they were ready. Coda launched its first few collections of truffles and introduced a multipack to the market, which didn’t exist. The box of chocolates is a simple idea and feeling. There are multiple flavors, beautiful colors, and a significant focus on the quality of the packaging. Within three weeks, Coda got the High Times Award for Best Edible. “[The award] that was a huge moment in the history of Coda Signature, just showing that the market was excited and welcomed us with open arms,” Gockley says. “It has continued to do so as we launched chocolate bars, and our extraction department, which produces all the wonderful oil that goes into all of our products. Even the cartridges, that are the best that I’ve ever had, and luxury topicals. The topicals add that additional level of experience from Aroma to how your body feels topically.”
2019 Coda Signatures released high-end infused gummies. It is stemming still from the French heritage Lauren loves. She notes that not only are the French desserts beautiful chocolate pieces, but they also feature fruit-based confections. That inspired the vegan gummies going beyond sour apple fruit punch. Imagine micro-dosing with flavors of Strawberry & Rhubarb, Coconut & Lime, Lychee & Cucumber, Pineapple & Jalapeno, and Pear & Ginger made with real fruit, pectin, and all-natural ingredients, gluten-free and vegan. “When you look at the market itself the demand for the gummy is significantly higher than for chocolate,” Lauren says. “I think that there’s a bit more permission to indulge in a gummy. It is just an unbelievable opportunity to continue to create flavors that are not actively able to create with chocolate.”
And what was the biggest challenge in the creation? “Finding that perfect balance between sweetness, texture, and cannabinoid content,” Lauren says. “Tapping into the smaller dose, the microdose products, so we don’t limit our customers to a 10mg piece. This product allows someone to be in control of their dosing.”
The luxurious edibles lightly dusted with infused sugar, French-inspired, microdose, high-end, gummies. Fruit Notes.