As the year winds down, my chocolate consumption always ramps up. From holiday parties, office goodies in abundance or moments I’m craving a comfort food fix, there is always a reason to purchase a delectable bar of chocolate bliss. The best part is Canada is home to a ton of top-notch chocolatiers and chocolate shops. Here are a few top choices from across our great nation.
Hummingbird Chocolate Makers
Who likes award winning chocolate? Search no further than Almonte, Ontario’s Hummingbird Chocolate Makers. Indulge in flavours like Fleur de Sel, PB & Joy and Mayan. In the category for “Best dark bean-to-bar under 70%,” their Hispaniola bar took top prize, taking home the 2016 Golden Bean prize at the Academy of Chocolate Awards in London. Hummingbird also won three silvers and two bronze in the competition. Bars sell for $8 and while you can purchase them online, their products are also available at shops and grocery stores across Ontario, like Farm Boy.
Chocolates x Brandon Olsen (CXBO)
There is a lot of hype around these chocolates, and rightfully so. They look like pieces of art and taste equally delish. Handmade by chef and chocolatier Brandon Olsen, and decorated by artist Sarah Keenlyside – also Olsen’s finance – it’s evident how much love goes into each piece. Flavours include orange blossom, honey, cinnamon, brown butter, lime, ginger, and black pepper. Purchase these little gems at CXBO’s storefront on College Street, or at well-known retailers like The Tempered Room, Cheese Boutique, Tokyo Smoke coffee shop and the Drake General Store.
Owned by Brad Churchill, this Calgarian set out to be the bad boy of the chocolate industry. Bad boys AND chocolate? Yes please! Customers rave about the service they receive with the ability to create exactly what they want. Products made at Choklat stay true to the bean, all grown in single plantations all over the world. Choose your bean, fillings, type of chocolate (i.e. dark, white, milk) and add-ins like candies or nuts and your order will be custom made. They also make bark and baked goods. Products can be purchased at their storefront on 21 Street NE in Calgary, AB or online to have your treats shipped across the country.
This Quebec, QC based chocolatier has a well-known fan base and tantalizes customers with yummy flavours like pure maple butter, balsamic and berries, cassis purée, chipotle, pear and goat cheese, seabuckthorn and buckwheat honey. Erico was founded by Éric Normand and succeeded by Cedric Allain and Eric Louinet, but the recipes have stayed true to Normand’s original vision. These chocolate creations can we purchased at their storefront – which also sells pastries and over 70 ice cream flavour – and can also be purchased online.
Are you drooling yet? Good quality chocolates make excellent stocking stuffers or hostess gifts, but don’t forget about number one. One for you, one for me, right?
What are your favourite Canadian chocolate brands? Have you given any of these a try?