For the Love of Chocolate – how perfect is that for the name of a store that sells every kind of chocolate imaginable. It is most certainly a Richmond institution every self-respecting chocolate devotee within a 20-mile radius should know about. When I first moved to Richmond, Va 8 years ago, I was looking for a chocolate called Cote d’ Or. It was a chocolate that was not commonly found in candy stores or supermarkets. It was a chocolate from my childhood, which a friend visiting from Europe brought home, and the taste has forever imprinted itself in my memory. I was almost resigned to the fact that I will not ever find it, but my hubby who was then just a colleague at work took me to “For the Love of Chocolate” and there my quest for the elusive Cote d’ Or ended. (Kraft has since bought the company that makes Cote D’ Or and I have began to see it more and more around)
When you walk into the store, you immediately feel that you are transported into chocolate nirvana. Shelves of high-end chocolate deck the store walls and glass cases full of Leonides Belgian truffles are on display. My favorite of these truffles are the cocoa truffles, which are simply dusted with cocoa powder, have a nice hard shell and a gooey center which you just love to savor. For the chocolate connoisseur who also loves to bake, you would not be left wanting since Valhorna, Callebaut, Scharffen Berger, Guittard, El Rey all come in different percentages and are available both in blocks and some in retail which can be broken up for you according to the amount you need. Also for those who love M&Ms, bins with a lever dispenser showcases every color you could think of; I could see this very useful for themed parties. And then there are unique chocolate molds in the form of a musical notes, a CD, a cigar even a computer which can be perfect as gifts depending on a person’s interest. You can also order gifts baskets, which they can assemble for you depending on your preferences or you can just specify an amount you want to spend and they could fill up the basket for you.
But this all may have a bittersweet (no pun intended) ending. Apparently an entrepreneur from California offered J, the owner, a lot of money to buy the store. It was an offer, he said, he could not refuse. J has shown so much love for his trade ever since he had the idea to open the store from an inspiration from a European tour; I only hope come January 2007, the new owner could live up to the name “For the Love of Chocolate”.
For the Love of Chocolate
3136 West Cary St.