Saturday, May 21, 2011

Going Out With Chocolate

Every couple of months or so my sister and one or more of her friends make a pilgrimage to Glendale (just west of Phoenix) for a chocolate fix.  Today was one of those days and I got to go along.  I was pretty excited; after all, if the world does end this afternoon, why not go with a really good chocolate in my mouth?

The source of this chocolate is the Cerreta Candy Company, which has been making assorted chocolates and other goodies in Arizona for 40 years.  Cerreta's is family-owned and operated by third-generation chocolatiers who really know what they're doing.  They use high-quality ingredients and are always experimenting with new and improved flavor combinations.  The candy-manufacturing part of the operation is open to the showroom, so on most weekdays visitors can watch the entire process while shopping for the end product.  Candy may be purchased pre-packaged or (at the factory) by the piece; I usually put together my own assortment of French mint truffles, dark-chocolate-covered raisins, peanut butter in milk chocolate, and dark chocolate with raspberry- or orange-flavored centers.  Really.  Good.  Stuff.

Cerreta's sells caramels, popcorn, caramel corn, cookies, nuts and pretzels in addition to chocolate, but I almost never get around to buying any of them.  Somehow, my basket always seems to mysteriously fill with chocolate, leaving no room for non-essentials - and if the world does end this afternoon, a last Cerreta chocolate definitely counts as one of my essentials.

"There's nothing better than a good friend, except a good friend with chocolate." ~ Linda Grayson