Timothy Adams isn’t one person – the stylish chocolate shop front man is the pairing of two people: Timothy Woods and Adams Holland. They’re partners whose lives revolve around the culinary arts, gorgeous design and making people happy.
“I love being a part of a community, and making my neighbors smile,” — says Timothy, a master chocolatier.
Adams agrees: “For Tim and me, chocolate is a magical experience, and we want to share it.”
Though their exuberant chocolate shop is new to downtown Palo Alto, Timothy and Adams have been delighting people for years. For a decade, they ran Echo, an acclaimed San Joaquin Valley restaurant that showcased produce from the surrounding fields and ranches long before “farm-to-table” was a thing. Timothy’s cuisine lured food editors from Bon Appetit, PBS and the LA Times, and impressed famous chefs including Gary Danko, Alice Waters, Judy Rodgers and Tracy Des Jardins.
The combination of Timothy’s food and Adams’ progressive interior design made Echo a gathering place for movers and shakers in politics, business and the arts. So when actress and singer Eartha Kitt — best known as Cat Woman from the original Batman TV series — was in town for a performance, Timothy and Adams hosted a garden party for her at their home.
“Timothy made his first chocolate truffles for Eartha Kitt,” says Adams. Those dark chocolate bonbons scented with fresh mint soon became the signature confection at Echo.
When the pair shuttered the restaurant in 2006, they set out traveling to find inspiration and their next adventure. It found them in Amsterdam, at a chocolate shop called Puccini Bomboni. Timothy immersed himself in chocolate almost literally, studying at Callebaut’s Chocolate Academy in Chicago and with Alice Medrich, San Francisco’s first lady of chocolate, among others.
Timothy approaches chocolate the same way he creates cuisine; each bonbon is formed by hand and fillings are made from local ingredients such as raspberries, peaches and figs according to the season. Others feature hazelnuts and pistachios, salted caramel, or spirits including Cognac and absinthe. He sources more than 20 different chocolates from around the world for their bonbons, bars and hot or cold sipping chocolates.
“Finding the best ingredients has inspired me through my whole career,” says Timothy. “I want you to feel like these chocolates were made just for you.”
Step inside the busy workshop, and you’ll be greeted with the aroma of something sweet and a smile. Don’t be surprised if they offer you a taste fresh from Timothy’s kitchen.
Whether you stop in for a crème fraîche bonbon, boxes of ornate chocolate buttons for wedding favors, a glass of wine or to take a Chocolate Workshop, everything you experience at Timothy Adams will taste deliciously exotic and comfortingly familiar.