Recently, I was lucky enough to spend an afternoon in a real-life chocolate factory, jealous? You should be!
Tucked away in picturesque Alresford sits Chocolate Craft, owned by former NHS worker Debbie Carter, who discovered a passion for making fantastic chocolate, and decided to take the plunge and make a business out of what she loves.
Specialising in bespoke chocolates and supplying high end shops such as Fortum & Mason, she has branched out in to the world of chocolate making workshops. Chocolate Craft also offer corporate team building days, hen parties or private parties for anyone who fancies their hand at making beautiful treats to take home.
Workshops take place in a working factory, led by a really knowledgable team, and every aspect is really hands-on. Their speciality is piping with chocolate to create beautifully decorated lollies and individual chocolates and everyone is taught how to do this during the session.
We began with a tray of chocolate moulds, layered with either white, dark or milk chocolates. The next part was my favourite, putting together my ganache filling with fruits, essential oils or alcohols, to make whatever flavour you fancy. After sealing and tucking the chocolates away in the fridge, we were given tools to practice some amazing chocolate piping, first on paper and then on some lollies.
When our tray of chocolates were sufficiently set, we spent time adding some decorations, and were sent away with them in lovely gold presentation boxes!
I felt really comfortable for the whole session, we all had more than enough attention and time to create something I never would have thought I could do. My final production was high quality, not something I could have done on my own at home, and thanks to the help of some incredibly patient teachers, they tasted great too!