I spent five weeks in Calgary earlier this year as a getaway and a change after spending much of two years at home. I was fortunate enough to have a place to crash in the middle of the city that allowed me to walk so many places, meet so many people and find sooooooo much chocolate.
There was no doubt I was going to find chocolate on this trip, as part of travelling new places is also exploring the chocolate scene there.
So it should be no surprise that I ended up in front of a store display featuring all sorts of bean to bar chocolate from around the globe my first day there. I mean I needed groceries, and The Cookbook Co. was between the grocery store and where I was staying, and I knew they carried delicious chocolate things, so clearly, it was stop one, because I didn’t want to run out of chocolate while I was on ‘vacation’.
The Cookbook Co. has a selection of fine chocolate and bean to bar chocolate as well as some local chocolatiers. I found some Kin + Pod bars and baking chippies there (baking chippies I had been wanting to taste for ages), some Cochu Chocolate covered toffee and other confections, and some Jacek bars, all from Alberta. From the rest of Canada and the world, I spotted McGuire Chocolate (originally from Calgary FYI), Sirene Chocolate, East Van Roasters, Chocosol, Hummingbird, Firetree, Marou, Raaka, Chocolat Bonnat, and Omnom. I know they likely had more than this, and by the end of my stay in Calgary they also had some Goldie Chocolate (Calgary made) on their shelves. Part of what I love about shops like this is that they change up what they offer, and you just never know, so be sure to pop in if you are in Calgary. They also have all sorts of amazing foods and wines in shop, which I also recommend, though chocolate is always what I look at first.
I met up with Amy of Goldie Chocolate twice, to sip hot drinks and talk all things chocolate! You can find her bars at Kaffle….. and A1 Café. Meeting her was such fun and the hours of chocolate talk were such a treat to share in person as we often exchange messages on Instagram. Goldie is a bean to bar chocolate maker in Calgary and I cannot tell you how many of her Gold Bars I ate while I was there.
I spent another lovely afternoon with Renu of @Rococoa Chocolate in Olds, Alberta. You may recognize her from The Great Chocolate Showdown season 1. We spent hours sipping chocolate and talking chocolate, tv, tasting chocolate, bonbons, and life. She left me with a box of her bonbons, and I was so excited to be able to taste them! What fun flavours and amazing designs.
Another highlight of the trip was meeting up with Dallas at The Chocolate Lab to take a tour of the chocolate factory, see all the beautiful bonbons they make, and talk all things chocolate. I have really enjoyed seeing how The Chocolate Lab started in a small space and has scaled the business up over time. Plus, their flavours and textures always amaze me. Not only did I leave with boxes of chocolates for me and some friends, I picked up a few of their single origin chocolate bars and their snack bars which are such a step up from the chocolate bar isle at the grocery store.
During the trip I also popped into Ten Degrees Chocolate to try their chocolate bonbons and pick up some of their chocolate bars to bring home. Their space is lovely and bigger than I expected, having a café, restaurant, tasting room, and kitchen for making bean to bar chocolate. It was quite amazing to see such a large set up for a younger bean to bar company.
I also ate other chocolate treats, brownies, macaroons at Ollia, pastries whenever I walked by a window full of them, and so many other delicious chocolatey bits.
If you haven’t checked out my blog about hot chocolate in Calgary you can find it here, as I was lucky enough to visit during the cities hot chocolate festival.
Do you have a favourite place in Calgary to get chocolate? Let me know in the comments so I can be sure to visit when I am there next.