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.

Patric – we love you

After a few months away, Patric is back in the Shop. The return comes with several new bars, as well as a fun, beautiful packaging makeover…

Patric Chocolate was also recently named one of the “Best New American Chocolates” by Food and Wine magazine.

For all you milk haters out there, he says this one will bring you over to the dark-milk side.

The classic 70% Madagascar with the addition of crunchy cacao nibs. Check out a picture here.

Peanut Butter and “Jelly”… the jelly is the natural fruity notes of the cacao. Seriously – OMG

We also have Patric’s well loved 67% Madagascar (incredibly smooth with bright, citrusy punches), as well as a new 70% blend. So for those of you who were missing Patric, or those of you who are new to this small batch, craft manufacturer, stop by and take a peak… and leave with something wonderful.

Thoughts: Escazú Roasted Pumpkin Seed and Guajillo Chili

The recent Escazú shipment was long anticipated, and happily, the bars I’ve sampled have been living up to expectations. Thoughts on their EZCA Goat’s Milk bar coming soon, but first up is the pumpkin seed and chili.

Of all this bar’s notable aspects, the smell is quite something to behold, and I encourage you to linger a bit. The roasted pumpkin seeds come through beautifully, giving a slightly smoky depth. And the chile is right at the surface, hinting at the spicy notes you are bound to find in this blended bar.

As you snap the bar, its pale pumpkin seeds are immediately revealed amongst the smooth chocolate. Although subtler than expected, fruity, nutty notes given by the pumpkin seeds are the dominant first impressions with this one. Next is cinnamon and a welcome sweetness that holds through to the subtle heat of the Guajillo chile at the end.

A beautiful, nutty spiciness is the lasting note in this bar, leaving the pallet refreshed (and in my case, ready for more). The crunchiness expected from the pumpkin seeds is, like other aspects of this bar, subtle – not quite as delicate as crystals of sea salt, yet far less intense than cocoa nibs. The time, care and passion Escazú puts into their bars and relationships with cacao producers (similar to Amano) certainly comes through in this bar, and I encourage to give it a try.

Combined with their flavourful single origin EZCA line, featuring beans from Venezuela and Costa Rica, Escazú is certainly ready to step up with the likes of Theo, Amano, Patric, and other bean to bar makers coming out of the U.S. And we are happy to give them a shelf in the Shop.

Launched new web shop: Chocophilia Online

Well, it took a long time to get it ready, but our new web shop went live today. If you need to order chocolate from anywhere in Canada, and send it anywhere in Canada, please give it a try! Here is the link:

Some cool things about the web shop:

  • It has almost all the products that we carry in our physical store available for purchase, including some hard-to-find items such as Claudio Corallo, Domori and Amedei chocolate.
  • We ship promptly using Canada Post expedited shipping with tracking.
  • Shipping costs are calculated in real-time.
  • We can send gifts with greeting cards and gift wrapping options.
  • The checkout process is simple and fast.

Let us know what you think of it. We need your suggestions. And newsletter subscribers will be getting a promotional coupon soon in the next newsletter. Stay tuned for more!

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.