Saturday, May 30, 2009


Truffles, $9.25/6-piece gift box

Located is various scenic spots around town, Chocolati cafes are nice places to linger over a coffee or a sweet treat, watching the world go by from the climate-controlled side of a gleaming picture window.  The Chocolati factory outlet on Aurora, on the other hand, is the kind of place where you get in, get your fix, and get out.   

The dust-colored, board-paneled facade is a little tricky to spot the shop from the busy street, and seems to invite furtive visits from customers in dust-colored overcoats, with faces concealed by upturned collars.  The only window is small (to discourage ram raids?) and grilled by a large neon sign.   

Inside, the shop is dimly lit but clean and hospitable (I was helped by the owner's mother, a charming woman who was in the middle of wrapping 4000 chocolate umbrellas and describes herself as a "volunteer").  To the right are shelves lined with molded chocolate novelties that make perfect small gifts; there are touristy molded chocolate tulips and umbrellas and Space Needles, or molded chocolate tool sets for DIY enthusiasts--all securely wrapped in cellophane or colorful foil.  On other shelves there are cocoas and wedding mints and mis-wrapped hospitality chocolates. 

There is also a display case full of truffles, to which I gravitated.  Chocolati's truffles are on the large side and available in a wide range of flavors--many of them nicely spicy.  I especially liked the dark chocolates and those that had been rolled in crunchy sanding sugar.  I also had a funny-looking cherry cordial from the bottom shelf, where factory seconds are sold for less than half price.   

Chocolati Factory Outlet Store
7708 Aurora Avenue North
Seattle, WA

No comments: