Chocophilia bars return to Edmonton tonight.

Here is some good news for Chocophilia lovers in Edmonton! The long wait is over. Your favorite Chocophilia bars and other Chocophilia products are once again available, fresh and delicious as ever.

The Chocophilia Line

After shutting down the shop in April,  I  approached my sister, Angie, about the possibility of continuing to make the bars herself.  Angie was with me in the kitchen from the very beginning in 2005 when we first developed the bar flavors and started producing them in a downtown condo for our first wholesale customers.   After careful consideration, Angie has decided to carry on the line, but on a smaller scale that better suits her situation (she has two little ones).  We made chocolate together this summer, went over all the key recipes, and I am very certain that she can make all of your favorite Chocophilia products perfectly. Over the last month or so, she has been busy making bars, cocoa nib caviar, hot chocolate and other confections with the goal of  selling them at farmer’s markets around the city.  I am so excited to see Angie grab the baton and run with it!
Sales restart this week!
Angie and your favorite Chocophilia products will be at the Highlands Farmer’s Market(112th Ave and 65th St), TONIGHT, Thursday Sept. 20th

Angie Roos

from 7pm to 9pm and at the Callingwood Farmer’s Market (69th Ave and 178th St.) this Sunday, Sept 23rd from 10am to 3pm.  She will do a repeat appearance the next week: Highlands on Thursday Sept. 27th (7pm to 9pm) and Callingwood on Sunday, October 7th (10am to 3pm).

So where is Kerstin?
Thank you everyone who has been following my global adventures on the blog.  I promise to continue writing and to keep you posted on my chocolate discoveries here in Germany.    Right now I am  very busy settling in and getting adjusted to living abroad.  While I have no plans to begin making chocolate here on a professional basis right now, I hope to perfect the recipes that I’ve collected on my trip around the world for a book that I am writing.  Please stay tuned for more on that!
Thank you all for your unwavering support,
-Kerstin (and Angie)

Drinking Chocolate Flights – Saturday, November 19th from 1-5pm

Whilst in Portland, I got to visit Cacao Drink Chocolate and taste the most amazing Flight of three drinking chocolates (below). So, as a nod to this Portland shop’s genius (and to celebrate the first snow and cooler temperatures), we will be offering Drinking Chocolate Flights this coming Saturday, November 19th, from 1-5pm. Guests can sample three types of drinking chocolate for $5. Here’s what’s on the menu:

Amedei’s “For You” Classic – This is the ultimate, folks, straight from Tuscany.

63% percent chocolate with finely ground hazelnuts, almonds and a little vanilla bean.

Vosge’s Bianca Couture Cocoa – The lightest of the three, this

concoction contains white chocolate, lemon myrtle and lavender.

Chocophilia Spiced Drinking Chocolate – Our house version of the

Mayan classic, with a hint of cayenne to warm up cold fingers and toes.

We will be putting out a couple tables so you can sit down and savour each elixir. Hope you will join us!

Tell us about your favourite bar…

We’ve been choosing our favourite bars over the past few months, and for December’s ‘Pick of the Month’, we’d like a little help.

Leave a comment below (or e-mail us at marianne [at] kerstinschocolates [dot] com) telling us why your favourite bar should be December’s feature. We’ll pick the most passionate response and give the winner their favourite bar on the house.

There are a couple caveats:

Firstly, no Porcelana.

Secondly, we like to use the monthly features to highlight some of our single origin/imported selections that people might not normally pick up. So no Chocophilia bars, please.

Other than that, any bar in the shop is game. We’ve now received all our Amedei, Amano, Madécasse, Askinosie, Bonnat, Michel Cluizel and François Pralus, so there’s lots to choose from. Happy tasting!


Edit: Here’s a list of bars currently at the shop. Madécasse has been left out since they were featured in our November pick.

Amano – Ocumare 70%, Ocumare 30%, Dos Rios, Guayas, Morobe, Cuyagua (Limited Edition), Montanya (Limited Edition)

Domori – Lattesal, Biancomenta, Cappuccino, Latteamaranth, Peperoncino, Biancoliquiriquia

Amedei – ‘9’, Chuao, Toscana Black 70%

Michel Cluizel – Los Anconès, Concepcion, Vila Gracinda

Bonnat – Madagascar 75%, Asfarth (dark milk), Surabaya (dark milk), Java (dark milk)

François Pralus – Indonesie, Tanzanie, Trinidad, Colombie

Askinosie – Del Tambo, Tenende Tanzania, Nibble-bar

TAZA – 60%, 70%, 80%

Patric – 75% Madagascar, PBJ OMG, Mint OMG, Mocha OMG, Cappuccino

A Chocolate-y Afternoon Tea Party

UPDATE: Cally herself will be in the shop with us for the afternoon! She is preparing 3 different tea blends, and will be selling some of her wares as well. This is a good chance to stock up and hear a bit about her future plans!

Rachel, in particular, has been waiting to host a chocolate-y tea party for quite some time now, and it’s finally here!

We hope you will join us on Sunday, October 23rd, to celebrate fall and chocolate at the shop. Three custom tea blends from Cally’s Teas will be served alongside our sweet and savoury menu:

Pear and walnut tarts with The Cheesiry’s Pecorino, Radish tartines with butter and sea salt and Pickled cucumber sandwiches with Smoky Valley chévre.

On the sweeter side there will be ginger scones with lemon-white chocolate cream, orange shortbread dipped in Valrhona’s 64% Manjari and an assortment of our bark and confections.

Tea will be served at 1pm, and again at 2:30pm. We will have a few tables in the shop for those who would like to take seats, but please note that (due to the size of our space) we encourage mingling amongst other chocophiles.

Tickets may be purchased online, by phone or in shop for $12. All guests will receive a 10% discount off of any purchase.

The Valentine’s 2011 Line-up

This year’s Valentine’s collection is a combination of Kerstin’s favorite bars and items from around the Shop, some amazing packaging and Rebecca Grant’s always inventive truffle flavors. And of course, there will be tastings for those of you who like a little wine with your chocolate.

Gift Boxes

Maybe a little variety is the way to your Valentine’s heart? We’ve created several options to fit the bill.

If the person in mind strikes you as Dark and Mysterious or Hot and Spicy we think one of our aptly named boxes may be the way to go. The Dark and Mysterious combines a tin of our Chocophilia Dark Drinking Chocolate with a Grand Noir 85% bar from Michel Cluizel, a bag of chocolate enrobed cacao beans and a silky red heart filled with two truffles from Rebecca’s Valentine’s selection. Feel free to indulge and thank us later.

The Hot and Spicy brings together chili treats from around the Shop to excite the palette (and warm all you frozen Edmontonians up!). This one includes a tin of our Chocophilia Spiced Drinking Chocolate, a Chocophilia ‘Hot Chocolate’ Bar, a bag of Chili Lime Cashews and two of Rebecca’s chili caramel truffles.

For those looking to go all out, we’ve put together a few other boxes that include Kusmi teas, Melt-a-ways, dark chocolate hearts, sumptuous chocolate reads and soft, smooth Zotter bars. Also be sure to check out our ‘Around the World’ Chocolate Tasting box below. Chocolate Lover’s boxes are still in the Shop as well and we’re always willing to help you customize if you you’re looking for something a little more particular for your Valentine.

Truffles, Bark and Chocophilia

Rebecca has spent the past few weeks coming up with truffle flavors that will win anyone over. Here’s what’s on the shelf: Huckleberry, Raspberry, Chili Caramel, Lavender and Passion Fruit. We also tracked down some incredible heart shaped boxes that hold about 17 confections – just enough to share in front of a warm fireplace.

Back by popular demand are milk and dark chocolate Bark Bouquets in some sweet and savory new flavors: Olive Oil, Sea Salt and Roasted Almond on 49% chocolate, Cinnamon milk chocolate with a dark chocolate mocha swirl and finally, Dark chocolate with raspberries and a raspberry white chocolate drizzle. It goes without saying that these flavors are a treat to eat, but the contrast of colors this year is making for some truly beautiful bouquets.

Roses are Red… that’s really as far as you need to go on Valentine’s Day, isn’t it? We’re re-releasing this white Chocophilia bar flavored with raspberries and saffron for a couple weeks, so be sure to get your fix. And be sure to keep an eye out for a new Chocophilia bar coming soon… Kerstin’s been busy in the kitchen testing out new flavors for another addition to the lineup that’s sure to win Edmonton over.

Chocolate Tastings

As usual we’ll be hosting wine and chocolate tasting evenings this Valentine’s weekend, and although Saturday the 12th is sold out, there are still spots left for Friday the 11th. You can find tickets here.

If you can’t make it to the Shop for a tasting, we’ve put together an ‘Around the World’ Chocolate Tasting box to help you create your own session at home. Flavor profiles from Venezuela, Ecuador, Madagascar and other spots are included in both milk and dark versions, and Kerstin’s tips for tasting chocolate are tucked in along side for an adventurous, flavorful evening at home.

Can’t make it into the Shop? Have no fear. Just head to our online Shop and check out our Valentine’s collection here.

The Annual – not to be missed – Winter Customer Appreciation party

We’re ramping up for a busy holiday season, but first, we’d like to spend a little quality time with the rest of you Chocophiles out there. With that in mind, we’re hosting our Winter Customer Appreciation party this coming Saturday, December 4th, from 2-5pm. There will be chocolate eggnog, mulled wine, and without a doubt, copious amounts of our Drinking Chocolate. You’ll also get first dibs on our 2010 holiday line.

Please let us know if you can come by printing a ticket at this link. If you’d like to bring a friend or two, just make sure you get them to grab a ticket as well… we don’t want to run out of eggnog!

We hope to see you there, but even if you can’t make it, please pop by the Shop and say ‘Hi’ this season! Thanks for your support everyone, we couldn’t do it without you.

Chocolate tasting with Change for Children on Dec 16th (Free tickets!)

There are a limited number of tickets available for the event, so get them
get by clicking here.

Event Details: Kerstin will be holding a public chocolate tasting workshop for children and parents to explain the issues around sustainable chocolate. Who are the people who grow your cacao? What is their life like? Does their work impact the flavor of the chocolate you eat? How will they be able to improve their standard of living?

During the event, all attendees will taste a selection of delicious chocolates.

Time: 5pm, Thursday, Dec 16th.

Location: McKernan School Gymnasium, 11330 76th Ave

Cost: Free (Donations for Change for Children will be collected at the door.)

Seating will be limited to 100 adults (16 and over). Children under 16 are free.

Get your ticket here.

‘Chocolat’ + Frozen Drinking Chocolate

This past Saturday evening on 104th was quite lovely – after a day full of Al Fresco festivities, a bunch of Edmontonians gathered outdoors at 10pm to watch Juliette Binoche and Johnny Depp in ‘Chocolat’ . We had bars, creme fraiche and bacon brittle peanut butter truffles, and frozen dark drinking chocolate on hand to complement the title of the film.

We hope you made it out to the show, but if not, stop by the Shop to try our summer creations listed above – hickory smoked bacon, peanuts and chocolate are an amazing combo, while the creamy creme fraiche truffle has a hint of bright tartness that is perfect for increasingly warm days.

We are still working on our frozen drinking chocolate recipe to offer in the Shop, but here’s a recipe you can try at home:

Frozen Drinking Chocolate

Adapted from a recipe by Serendipity 3

Makes 1 Serving

1/2 ounce dark or milk chocolate (try your favourite bar, or the Valrhona Caraibe 64% is lovely here)

2 teaspoons of Kerstin’s Dark Drinking Chocolate

1 1/2 tablespoons sugar (reduce a little if you’re going to use milk chocolate)

1 1/2 cups whole milk

3 cups ice

Whipped cream for serving (optional)


Chop the chocolate into small pieces. Place it in the top of a double boiler over simmering water, stirring until melted. Add the drinking chocolate mix and sugar. Stir until completely melted. Remove from heat and slowly add ½ cup of milk until smooth. Cool to room temperature.

In a blender, place the remaining cup of milk, the room-temperature chocolate mixture and the ice. Blend on high speed until smooth. Serve in your glass of choice with whipped cream if desired… and maybe a sprinkling of some Cocoa Nib Caviar.


Al Fresco with Kerstin’s Chocolates tomorrow.

Big news: We will have a booth at the 104th St. Block party tomorrow. At the booth, we will be testing out our new summer creation: Frozen Dark Drinking chocolate. We will also have truffles and bars! The weather is going to be great, and the movie of the night will be “Chocolat”, so if you love chocolate, come out and enjoy the event with us!

More Chocolate Education Dates

If you love organic chocolate, there are still some tickets left for our organic chocolate tasting on Wednesday, April 14th.

We’ve added a new tasting on Wednesday, April 28th, that will feature 10 different milk and dark chocolates. As always, the essential bit of history and information on T. cacao will be included.

In addition to tastings, we still have one spot left in our April 11th Chocolate Making Class, and we’ve added a new session for May 25th. Tempering and ganache will be covered, and best of all, you get to create your very own confections to take home and enjoy!

Tickets for both tastings and making classes can be found here, or give us a call (780.990.0011) to book a spot.

Digital Easter Egg Hunt!

We are having another Easter Egg Hunt this year! Although last year’s event was a huge success, we have decided to make the 2010 hunt digital! Here’s how you can get some ganaches on us:

Pictures of Kerstin and Angie’s chocolate tour around Paris have recently been posted on our blog. There are four eggs hidden throughout the photos in Kerstin’s posts below on Paris (click on the photos to get a closer look). Each egg has a letter on it, and together make a four letter word… in French.

Come tell us the correct answer at the Shop between March 30th and April 3rd, and you will win a box of Michel Cluizel’s Les Criolles ganache cacao pods (retail value $12; while supplies last).

Good luck, and have fun! See you soon!

Three Chocolatiers, One Event

Laurie Blakeman will be hosting ‘Chocolate Fusion‘ at Rutherford House (11153 Saskatchewan Drive) on Thursday March 4th, from 7-9pm.

The event will feature presentations from three of Edmonton’s chocolatiers:

Ed Fong of deVine Wines and Spirits will also be there, with what I’m sure will be some fantastic wine selections.

So if you can handle three of Edmonton’s chocolatiers in one evening (and we know you can), please come enjoy! Further event info and tickets can be found here.

Interact with your cacao: tastings and chocolate making

We’ve got new dates scheduled for tastings and chocolate making workshops!

Chocolate tastings are a great way to introduce yourself to the world of chocolate, or to find a new bar to fall in love with. Find out about the history of chocolate, the mystery behind single origin bars, and what to look for when buying your chocolate. Best of all, you get to sample some of the best milk and dark chocolate we have to offer!

If you are looking for something a little more adventurous, we still have tickets available to the wine + chocolate tasting, coming up this Saturday evening.

You can find dates and buy tickets or gift certificates for all our scheduled tastings here.

Chocolate making workshops include information on tempering, making ganache and creating your own confections. And you get to take home everything you make!

Dates and tickets can be found here.

Private tastings for groups of 12 or more, and chocolate making workshops for groups of 4-6 are also available. These events are a great way to spend an evening with your friends, family or co-workers. E-mail or call (780.990.0011) for pricing and scheduling.

Second Anniversary Bash

Thank you to everyone who came out to celebrate the Shop’s second anniversary with us! We had a great time, and hope you left with all your chocolate cravings satisfied.

Shop talk

Thank you also, to all those who gave us input on the new Saffron-Rose bar. We ended up making versions in both white and dark chocolate, and asked everyone attending to vote for their favourite, as well as names for the new bar. We’re still tallying the votes, so keep an eye out for the results.

Kerstin was busy in the back of the Shop all evening whipping up Mint Chocolate Martinis and they were a hit! You all looked so chic shopping for chocolate with martinis in hand! Lots of you asked for the recipe to re-create the drink at home, so here it is:

Mint Chocolate Martinis

This recipe makes two martinis


4 ounces Valrhona Dark Chocolate pistoles (we were using 64% and 72% throughout the evening)

8 ounces water, boiling

12-16 mint leaves (or a couple drops of mint oil)

3 ounces Vodka

Bit of Kalhua to taste (optional, but we added it for some sweetness)

Ice cubes


Muddle the mint in a cocktail shaker or pint glass.

Add the chocolate pistoles and boiling water. Stir until the chocolate pistoles have melted and let cool to room temperature.

Add the vodka, Kalhua and ice. Shake and strain into a chilled martini glasses.

Garnish with a fresh mint leaf and serve immediately.

You can double, triple or quadruple this recipe and make it in advance if you’re entertaining a large group. Simply make the chocolate-mint base in a pitcher or blender, refrigerate until ready to use, and strain it before serving.

Enjoy! And please let us know how they go over with your guests (and you) below.

Our Second Anniversary Party!


This Saturday, Feb 6th, 2010 will be exactly 2 years from the date of our grand opening in 2008. We have enjoyed meeting many of you and learning about chocolate together. We appreciate all of your support and in your honor we will have a party on the evening of Saturday, Feb 6th from 4pm-7pm. Come meet the rest of Edmonton’s chocophiles! At the party there will be:

  • An instant-Win Truffle for each attendee that will come with a valuable mystery bonus inside.
  • The unveiling of our newest Chocophilia Bar flavor: Saffron Rose (Be the first to taste it!)
  • Chocolate cocktails (if you had the chocolate martini at our grand opening, pictured above, you know what we can do). (Non-alcoholic drinks for kids and non-alcoholics too!)
  • Live music by local musicians Trevor Rockwell and Kris Schindel.

To get tickets to this event, subscribe to our monthly newsletter immediately!

We’re going to the Olympics!

Well, I’m not sure if anyone from the Shop will make it out, but our Chocophilia Drinking Chocolate is off to Vancouver!

From February 12-28, Alberta House in Vancouver will be serving Kerstin’s drinking chocolate, along with other food and drink from Alberta, to represent the diverse cuisine the Province has to offer. There will also be free nightly performances of music, dance and theatre, along with an exhibition of visual art from the Alberta Foundation for the Arts’ collection.

If your off to the Olympics this year, be sure check out Alberta House to see what the Province has to offer… and don’t forget to pick up a cup of Chocophilia! You can find more details here.

Love is Free Edmonton

Looking for a unique and interactive way to celebrate Valentine’s Day with your loved one? Check out Love is Free Edmonton.

There will be wine, an interactive cooking lesson with chef Sebastian Lisz, live music and dancing. And of course, we will be there with the essential Valentine’s Day indulgence – chocolate. Once your evening of wine, food and ‘groovin’ is complete, you will be whisked away via complimentary limo service.

Tickets for either February 12th, 13th or 14th are $195 per couple, but until February 5th, you can get the early bird price of $175.

You can purchase tickets and check out specifics here. Hope to see you there!

Results from the 2009 Name That Origin contest.

Congratulations to Erin D. of Edmonton for winning the 2009 Name That Origin contest. She won the $400 chocolate shopping spree! Thanks to all the competitors and to our two celebrity observers, Jennifer C-K and Scott McKeen.

It was an intense and enjoyable experience for all. A very good report on our event was written by Sharon on her blog, Only Here for the Food. Read this posting for all the details of the event!

Since there was such a positive response from all who participated in this contest, we are going have to plan another contest in 2010. Keep a lookout!

We took this video of the full final stage of the competition, so if you would like to see what it was like, please watch the video below!

2009 Open house and chocolate tasting finals + giving back

Tuesday Dec 22nd will be our annual Christmas Open House at Kerstin’s Chocolates. Come down to the shop between 3pm and 7pm and enjoy a warming cup of hot drinking chocolate with or without extra “cheer”. There might also be some samples of some of our upcoming products to taste. Then at 7pm, stay on to see the final showdown in our “Name That Origin” competition. The winners of the first phase of the contest along with the randomly chosen wildcard entrants will battle to see who can outlast everyone else in a chocolate taste-off. As noted, the winner will receive a $400 gift certificate to use at the shop. No pressure at all! We will have two celebrity officials observing the competition: Edmonton Journal columnist Scott McKeen and the Edible Prairie’s Jennifer Cockrall King. Come one come all and celebrate with us!

One more thing: We want to give back to the developing world a little this year (since that is where cocoa comes from) so we will be sending 20% of sales of Chocophilia Products on Dec 22nd to one of our favorite local charities, Change for Children. Find out more about them on their website.

A contest: Name That Origin!

Name that Origin, the contest!

Update (Dec 22nd, 2009): The finals are tonight at 7pm! If you are competing, you will have been notified by e-mail. Everyone is welcome to attend!

Update (Dec 17th, 2009): We have 12 winners of the first round so far, so make sure to enter before the 22nd!

After the big response to our city-wide Easter Egg Hunt this spring, we decided to create another fun event that you can participate in. This one will be a challenging task that will push your knowledge of chocolate to the limit. Do you know your cacao? Are you ready to prove it? Like with fine wine, each cacao growing region in the world produces beans with a distinctive flavor. With practice, almost anybody can learn to tell the difference between chocolates made from beans from different countries. We want to find the people with the greatest palates in the city. We call this contest the “Name That Origin” game. It will run from Dec 3rd to Dec 22nd. The rules are simple, and there is no fee to play! Here is how you do it:

a) Come in to Kerstin’s Chocolates (10139 112th St.), and fill out an entry form. You will then be given 4 small pieces of chocolate to taste.
b) You will have to figure out the country of origin of the cacao used in each of the chocolates (all chocolates will have a single country of origin for the cacao.) and write you answers on the entry form.
c)If you don’t name the correct countries of origin you will receive a 20% discount card and will be entered in the wildcard draw to compete in the Chocolate Tasting Challenge.
d) If you do get them all correct, you will instantly win one container of our Chocophilia drinking chocolate (Spicy or Dark, an $18.95 value). You will also be invited to a special a Chocolate Tasting Challenge event on Dec 22nd. At this event, there will an extreme chocolate identification challenge for all the winners of the first tasting and the wildcard entries. The person who prevails at this event will win a $400 gift certificate from Kerstin’s Chocolates and the title of “The Top Taster”.

Some finer points to note:

1) We will choose the 4 chocolates that you will taste from a larger pool of chocolates.

2) Each entrant will get different chocolates in a different order.

3) Each entrant will be told which of the answers were right and which was wrong.

4) Each entrant can participant once and only once in the contest!

Indulgence a big success.

Thanks to everyone who came out to see us at Indulgence 2009. We had a lot of fun at the event, and we hope that you did too. We create a new recipe for the event, and we were surprised by the response! We called it our “Cassis Chocolate Cup with Praline Crunch” and it was made with ingredients from two local producers: local Honey from Lola Canola Honey and local black currants from Mo Na Foods. Check out the diagram!

Diagram of our desert!

Diagram of our desert!

We hope to post some photos of the event soon.