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Love is in the air…

by Archives February 8, 2006

Saint Valentine’s day is seen by many as a romantic holiday for couples and an opportunity for cupid to launch his arrows into some unsuspecting singles. But there is another large and commonly forgotten segment of the population that revels in this holiday. This is, of course, the chocolate lovers.

So how are some of Montreal’s chocolateries gearing up for this chocolate laden holiday? Genevieve Grandbois Chocolaterie on St-Viateur street has come up with a special concoction for Saint Valentine’s day. A dainty tin box filled with little heart shaped chocolates and wrapped in red ribbon is this chocolateries’ creation for cupid’s holiday. This may seem a little predictable for a chocolate boutique known for its innovative creations, but there is a little something special added.

“Our chocolate hearts are a blend of dark chocolate and spicy peppers, just a hint, not so much that you have to have a big glass of water on hand,” Sophie Bigue, manager of Genevieve Grandbois Chocolaterie, said.

The tin contains nine different perfectly square chocolates, which all have their own unique design. There are eight classic chocolates , and the ninth varies based on the chocolate maker’s new discoveries. In the spirit of the season, the newest creation is “Rose.”

“It is a dark grenache chocolate infused with rose,” said Bigue. “It is almost like getting chocolate and flowers in one gift.”

Genevieve Grandbois Chocolaterie will also be opening a little, earlier than usual on Saint Valentine’s day. “We will be opening at nine, so that last minute shoppers can pick up a gift on their way to work. And we have lots of those,” said Bigue.

A little further east at Legende et Origines Chocolat on St-Denis, owner and chocolate creator, Guy Eysseric, has a few plans of his own for Saint Valentine’s day.

“We hand craft heart shaped dark chocolate containers. They are decorated with red cocoa butter, and the customer can fill them with any chocolates they choose,” said Eysseric.

There will be some new additions to the chocolate counter in the days before Saint Valentine’s day.

“I will have a few new creations for the holiday, but no heart shaped chocolates. That is not really my style. I stick to the classic french style chocolates; petite yet decadent,” said Eysseric. “It is a very busy season for us, even busier than Christmas, especially the few days before. I have some friends that help me make the chocolates.”

So, the next few days will be busy for Eysseric and company as he works on his new creations.

As for whether this chocolate maker samples his wares while he works, Eysseric said, “We do have little tastes along the way, but it takes about 36 hours before most of the chocolates are finished, so we have to wait too.”

The best seller at Legendes & Origines is the “Criollo”, which is white chocolate painted with red cocoa butter. This classic chocolate bearing Valentine’s Day colours will no doubt be a big seller for the holiday.

So, whether you are planning a romantic evening with your significant other, or are wondering if cupid has you in his sights, there is one certainty about Saint Valentine’s day: ‘Tis the season for chocolate!

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