According to a study done by Dr. David Lewis, chocolate gives people a more intense and longer “buzz” than kissing does. All the more reason to mark your calendars for National Chocolate Day on Oct. 28! Tampa Bay has several chocolate shops that make chocolate from scratch, so bring your taste buds, love of chocolate and visit one of these local places with your date for a sweet time!
Located in Belleair Bluffs, William Dean chocolate has been around since 2007. The owner, Bill Brown, has studied with some of the top chocolatiers in the world. In 2010, William Dean won over 10 awards at the SF International Chocolate Salon! The chocolate is made by hand in small batches and without preservatives. William Dean sells over 35 types of chocolate, including classics like hazelnut and salted caramel, and fun flavors like piña-colada and passion fruit! All the chocolates are airbrushed or decorated in some way. Some have a simple design, while others are painted to look like a crown. They’re almost too pretty to eat. In addition to chocolate pieces, William Dean also sells chocolate-covered jelly beans, feuilletine, chocolate bars, popcorn and more!
Schakolad is a local family-owned chocolate company that got its start in Florida. The first Schakolad chocolate shop opened in Winter Park in 1995. Since then, the shop has franchised in the U.S. and Israel. Schakolad has many categories of chocolate designs, such as Christmas and birthday themes, making it easy to pick a gift for someone special. There is even an option to get pieces of chocolate in a box made of chocolate!
Pinellas Chocolate has a little shop located in Largo. The chocolate is 62% cocoa, making it dark. Flavors include cocoa and cinnamon, cocoa and orange (perfect for Fl!), 80% cocoa Honduras and more! The bars are perfect for people who eat chocolate slow or for sharing with a date, because the bars can be broken into 15 squares. If you are familiar with Coppertail, they are one of nine other local breweries who source their cocoa nibs (used in their beers) from Pinellas Chocolate! So this Oct. 28, make sure you have a cold chocolate flavored beer from your favorite local brewery and chocolate bar from Pinellas Chocolate.
A good gluten-free cake can be hard to find. GateauOChocolate, in St. Pete, specializes in gluten-free chocolate that the owner has perfected over several years. The shop uses pure, dark Ecuadorian chocolate from places that are part of the rain forest alliance. The cakes are finished with toasted almonds and comes in 6-inches and 9-inches. Gluten-free people no longer have to look for a bakery for a delicious chocolate cake!