New York- Joan Coukos, Chocolatier & CEO of CHOCOLAT MODERNE, is a Native New Yorker. She graduated magna cum laude from Duke University with a degree in French and Russian, and received an MBA from UNC Chapel Hill before entering the New York banking scene. Her extensive career included six years in Moscow during the rough and tumble days of Russia’s transition to a market economy, after which she returned to New York and Wall Street in 1999.
Open to new inspiration and challenge, in December 2000, on a trip to Brussels, she fell under the spell of old world, hand made chocolates and began creating recipes back in her tiny Manhattan kitchen. Her co-workers became the first enthusiastic guinea pigs, and upon receiving repeated accolades, she began taking formal steps to becoming a chocolatier.