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This article was published 28/3/2016 (1329 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Move over Hershey’s, there’s a new chocolatier in town.
Officially opened at the beginning of March, Decadence Chocolates (70 Sherbrook St.) has something to offer for every chocolate-lover. Owner Helen Staines said that business has been great so far with neighbours coming in to welcome her to the area.
"I think they’re excited as well that there’s a place here," Staines said. "I’ve always liked it round here. Sherbrook is really changing and with Stella’s, Thom Bargen, the Tallest Poppy, the Nook and Bistro Dansk, I think it’s just booming here."
Surrounded by other West Winnipeg favourites, Staines is fitting in with her handmade confections, but she is also the first chocolatier in the area. The shop’s opening timed well with Ciao! Magazine’s annual Chocolatefest, which takes place throughout the city from April 1 to 30.
"We’re celebrating chocolate," Ciao! publisher Laurie Hughes said. "We don’t have the official statistics on this, but it may very well be the world’s most favourite and popular flavour."
Restaurants throughout Winnipeg are taking part in the festival by featuring a chocolate menu item, but chefs have gone outside the box and are also featuring savoury items as well as cocktails, or rather, chocktails.
"At Café Ce Soir (937 Portage Ave.), the chef is offering death by chocolate cake," Hughes said. "And it’s also one of the restaurants that’s embraced this, and he’s doing bison as an appetizer with espresso chocolate rub and then a cocktail that’s going to be a white chocolate lavender martini."
Hughes added that it’s a great way to try something new at your favourite restaurant, or follow the scent of chocolate to discover new eateries.
At Decadence Chocolates, Staines will be serving a brownie with homemade vanilla bean ice-cream and hot chocolate.
"The hot chocolate we make is thick and creamy and made with chocolate," Staines promised. "If you’re going to do it, it has to be made with chocolate, and good chocolate. You got to do it proper."
Staines came to Winnipeg from England 15 years ago, and she offers a variety of English-inspired treats in-store, such as banoffee chocolate.
"It’s a pastry case with dulce de leche, fresh bananas, cream and then chocolate on top, so I’ve recreated that into a chocolate," she said. "I like fruit and chocolate so passion fruit is another favourite flavour… I don’t just do a strawberry chocolate, it’s strawberry and balsamic. I’ve married honey and thyme together. I do a lavender flavour because my mom grew lots of lavender in her garden in England."
Staines learned how to make chocolate through an online course with École Chocolat, a three-month session based out of Vancouver.
"Lots of practice, lots of failures, lots of good stuff," Staines said of the learning process. "My friends liked me at that point because they got all the trial bits."
Decadence Chocolates is open Tuesday to Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
For a full listing of Chocolatefest events, visit ciaowinnipeg.com
Community journalist — The Metro
Alana Trachenko is the community journalist for The Metro Email her at alana.trachenko@canstarnewscom Call her at 204-697-7132