• ArtisansCurator

Eat. It Will Make You Feel Better

Have you ever seen Chocolat? The 2000 film is about a chocolatier bringing together a conservative village to become a community. Not only is the cinematography delightful, mysterious and lush. The soundtrack is uplifting too, and you can almost taste the chocolate on your tongue, silky-smooth truffles or rich and dark in the Mayan drink.

Chocolate Utopia in Nottingham serves a wonderfully indulgent hot chocolate, including real Mexican style chocolate with chili pepper, besides a glorious selection of truffles, bars, nips and other chocolatey treats. My favourite truffle sorts are Tonka (dark ganache with Venezuelan Tonka beans), Rum & Raisin (from a mould the shape of a small barrel, filled with liquid rum), Salted Caramel and the white Champagne Truffles. It is a family-run independent business set up by a couple - Helen and Chris Forster who have been making chocolates since 2004 and joined by their brother(-in-law) (Robin). The fine art of sweet treats runs in the family as Helen’s parents are also chocolatiers.

Chocolate Utopia's luxurious truffles

As someone who is dairy-intolerant (I could stomach about a truffle’s worth of milk chocolate a day but always prefer dairy-free) and has several nut allergies, I can still find a good selection that fits my needs and the team are all lovely in assisting and answering any questions.

Another business selling first-rate chocolate is Luisa’s Vegan Chocolates. Luisa is Nottingham's first and only craft bean-to-bar chocolatier. Her hand-made chocolates are all vegan and sustainably source single-origin which means only using the beans from one maker and place at a time to create the chocolate bars rather than using blends. This gives the bars extraordinary character - fruity, bitter, soft, nutty. Luisa’s is happy to let you taste nips of her selection and it honestly blew my mind how varied and different chocolate can be. Each chocolate bar features a note of the place of origin and the maker and my personal favourite is Yanira’s 66% Cacao Colombian Single Origin Dark Chocolate.

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