OCTA’s 2013 Valentine’s Gift Guide!

Valentine’s Day is fast approaching, and this year the ladies at OCTA want locally-crafted chocolate! If your honey’s a locavoracious chocolate-lover, this list will provide you with what you need to make it an extra sweet Valentine’s, no matter where you live in Ontario. Trust us: we’ll have you going coo-coo for cacao. Hummingbird Chocolate Maker: Ottawa, ON hummingbird-bars We get it, chocolate doesn’t usually come from Ontario. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be ethically sourced! Presenting Hummingbird Chocolate Maker, an Ottawa based company that sells their bean-to-bar goodness at the Ottawa Farmer’s Market (and many other locations!). At Hummingbird, they slow roast and stone grind their own chocolate, and source their cacao beans through Fair or Direct Trade. They sell deliciously unique chocolate bars with the beans ranging from locations in the Dominican Republic, Venezuela, Peru, and Bolivia. Perked your interest? Check out their website, twitter, or facebook for more info!  Copper Kettle Chocolate Company: Picton, ONLavendarchocolate

Looking for something closer to Prince Edward County? Check out the Copper Kettle Chocolate Company for some locally sourced treats! They’ve got a lavender chocolate bar made from lavender grown right in Prince Edward County. Also, to help promote Prince Edward County’s  wineries, they’ve produced six types of chocolate ‘shots’: delicious chocolate filled with some of Ontario’s finest (like the Sandbanks Baco Noir shot, mmmm)! Pop one of these in your mouth next time you pop by, and check out flavours and more on their website, facebook and twitter!

SoMA Chocolate Maker: Toronto, ON

chocolatebeetsVoted “Best Chocolate” in Toronto Life and NOW Magazine, SoMA will surely have your valentine sweet on you! With two locations in the Distillery and King West, SoMA has become legendary for their organic, fair trade, small-batch chocolate fashioned into amazingly creative forms. Sample some of their classic truffles, like their Gooderham and Worts whisky or 8 year old balsamic vinegar, and try some decadently delicious hot chocolate while you’re at it! Be sure to check out their seasonal specials for valentines: we’ve heard a rumour it involves chocolate beets! That’ll get anyone’s heart beet-ing for you. Remember to keep your sweet tooth satisfied by keeping up with them at home, facebook, or on twitter Chocolate Barr’s Candies: Stratford, ON chocolatebarrsIf you identify as a choco-holic (we at OCTA certainly do!), Chocolate Barr’s Candies will offer you the chocolatey hit you need! This Stratford gem is featured on the Stratford Chocolate Trail and are known for their refreshing chocolate-covered minties and to-die-for truffles, featuring such flavours as lavendar,  sea salt, and ice wine! Stock up on some of these treats for valentine’s, and be sure to keep up-to-date on their twitter and facebook. Christy’s Gourmet Gifts: Burlington, ON Christy's_Beer_brittle_product If chocolate isn’t your favourite, don’t worry, you can still satisfy your Valentine’s sweet tooth locally! Does your hubby like beer? Christy’s Gourmet Gifts offers a melt-in-your-mouth craft beer brittle, made with locally sourced craft beer. There’s also a Chardonnay wine brittle available for those wine lovers, made from Ontario’s Niagara and Prince Edward County wines. Christy’s Gourmet still offers lots of chocolatey goodies, as evident from their status on Burlington’s Chocolate Trail! Check them out online on facebook, twitter, or on their blog. Either way, your Valentine’s Day will be brittle off for it! Manitoulin Chocolate Works: Kagawong, Ontario

SpringTruffle

Chocolate isn’t only for Valentine’s! Although closed for the winter season, Manitoulin Chocolate Works opens up this spring, and will feature their spring truffle: white chocolate stuffed with locally sourced rhubarb and strawberries! So take a trip to Manitoulin Island, it’s a good excuse to try some of these irresistible truffles. Check them out on facebook for updates!

May your Valentine’s be as sugar-coated as your locally-sourced sweets! Be sure to share your all chocolatey favourites with us @OCTA_licious!

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