Bring On The Chocolate This Christmas!
Where would Christmas be without a bit of chocolate to chomp on?! Chocolate takes its place in the festive fare list in so many ways. From exquisite truffles to serve as petit fours after the Christmas Dinner, to a selection to nibble while you’re watching a Christmas movie. Then there’s the box of chocolates for the teacher when school ends for the holidays. Or the chocolate figurine you know will be just perfect for that certain someone! There’s always a place for chocolate at Christmas, and we know the best places to find it!
Lorge Chocolatier, Co Kerry
The original O'Connor's shop and post office, located on the side of the road at Bonane, Co Kerry, about 10km from Kenmare, is now Lorge Chocolatier, a boutique chocolate shop and production venue, owned and run by French chocolate maker Benoit Lorge. Ben, originally from Lorraine in France, creates unique and individual handmade chocolates.
He made the jump from working as a top pastry chef abroad to concentrate on chocolate making several years ago, after using the quiet winter months in Kerry to produce chocolates to raise money for local charities. Demand was huge and his work soon developed a fine reputation among food lovers and connoisseurs.
Ben’s chocolates are among the most beautiful and exceptional in the chocolate making world. So exquisite is his touch, you won’t know whether to eat his works of art or gaze at them admiringly. You’ll probaby do the latter before temptation gets the better of you!
This Christmas, indulge in the selection of 30 handmade chocolates in the Snowflake Box. Or treat someone you know to a personalised hamper of chocolates, champagne and other festive specialities. Contact Ben and his team to discuss your requirements, then collect your hamper at the shop, in time for Christmas.
Wilde Irish Chocolates, Co Clare
In the wilds of Clare, Wilde’s Irish Chocolates are created. Patricia Farrell is a real life Charlie, in her very own chocolate factory, in Tuamgraney. Though you can hardly call it a factory – it’s a tiny shop with chocolate kitchen fully visible behind the counter. This is where Patricia and her little helpers let their imaginations run wild, pardon the pun, to produce a range of chocolate goodies.
Christmas specialities include the Moments Milk Chocolate Collection, a variety of handmade chocolates with different fillings. Or choose from the selection of handmade milk chocolate bars adorned with Silly Reindeer, Silly Snowmen or Silly Sheep festive wrappings in the Christmas Wishes selection. Perfect for stocking fillers. Hot Chocolate will never be the same again, once you make it with the Wilde’s Christmas Hot Chocolate pack of solid chocolate blocks on sticks, which you melt into hot milk.
You’ll also find Wilde’s classic Artisan Bars. These solid milk, white or dark chocolate slabs come with a variety of flavourings sprinkled on top. Try the 90% Dark Chocolate Chilli Kiss to warm you up, or go seasonal with Cranberry Dark or Cranberry Swirl, or the Berry Nut Trio in milk or white chocolate. Treat yourself and the kids to a factory visit in the run up to Christmas. You can also find Wilde Irish Chocolate’s Doolin Chocolate Shop in the village of Doolin in Co Clare.
The Chocolate Garden of Ireland Cafe and Visitor Experience
OMG. If you want a treat in the run up to Christmas, a visit to The Chocolate Garden of Ireland Cafe and Visitor Experience is an absolute must! A chocoholics paradise, waiting to be discovered. Here in this sacred spot lies a chocolate and ice cream production factory, chocolate shop, ice cream parlour and coffee shop. At Christmas, the atmosphere buzzes with excitement as festive chocolates are created. You wont know what to choose!
Better still, the annual Christmas Elf Chocolate Workshops are now running on 2nd, 3rd, 9th, 10th, 16th, 17th, and 23rd December. What a magical way for the kids to get ready for Christmas, with a chocolate making session, complete with live link to the North Pole Elves Workshop, where Santa himself will speak to the boys and girls! Lots of tasting and chocolate fun, finishing with a mug of real hot chocolate. Trainee Chocolate Elves will receive a Certificate. Pre-booking for all dates absolutely essential. You can find their contact details via their review page here
Chez Emily Handmade Chocolates
Just a twenty minute drive from Dublin, Chez Emily chocolate production, shop and café is located in the family home of Ferdinand Vandaele and Helena Hemerryck. Named after their daughter Emily, Chez Emily is a chocolate house dedicated to handcrafting the finest chocolate creations. This Christmas, you’ll find a superb selection of festive chocolates, perfect for filling all sorts of requirements on your Christmas list.
From the exquisitely packaged Exclusive Christmas Chocolates Gift Box, to Gift Packs with small Chocolate Box and Handwritten Gift Bars. Kids will love the hand moulded figurines of milk and white Chocolate Santa with his red hat, Santa Bear, Santa Boot filled with chocolates, Santa Boot with chocolate Santa Bear and Sugar Cane or individual Hot Chocolate Set with Mug. Assorted Christmas figure chocolates and Santa Lollipops are super for tying onto the tree, or popping in a stocking.
For the techno users on your gift list, treat them to a Milk and White Chocolate Vintage Mobile Phone. The internet certainly will not distract them with this mobile! But the taste might. Browse the shop for these and other amazing chocolate gifts, before enjoy a cup of coffee and pastry or chocolate in the café afterwards.