If you’re looking for something sweet, chocolaty and original, be sure to check out O’Chocolate, located inside the shopping center at the “5 on Court Building” where FedEx Kinko’s resides on Court Street in Athens, Ohio.
O’Chocolate is amazingly delicious, with a soft creamy outside, a gooey center in the middle, and a mixture of wonderful local ingredients that kind of make your taste buds quiver in anticipation of what’s coming to your palate next.
The truffles come in a wide variety of flavors and are made fresh – sometimes less than two days before. Truffle varieties include the lavender, made with vanilla extract, lavender extract and blue corn flowers; the red wine, a mix of organic red wine, organic agave nectar and red hibiscus flower; and my personal favorite, the cayenne, consisting of cayenne, cardamom and cinnamon.
Peters uses only fair trade, organic chocolate to create her truffle extravaganzas and uses local ingredients from area farms, including Sticky Pete’s Maple Syrup, Jorgensen Farm’s Honeycomb, Snowville Creamery Cream, Silverbridge Coffee, Shagbark’s popped amaranth and fruit from Cherry Orchard.
“I use fair trade, organic chocolate and I temper all of it, so I make all of these truffles and try to design them around local ingredients and just stick to the fair trade organics so I know that the dollars are going to local farmers, and it’s really high quality chocolate, with no fillers or anything in there,” Peters explained.
Peters was seeking a creative outlet where she could use her own knowledge of chocolate-making, and combine it with fresh, local ingredients. She also wanted to create something with organic, fair trade chocolate in an effort to sell a healthier alternative to the typical chocolate bar, all while helping to support farmers.
“About two years ago, I started making all these fresh truffles and selling them at the farmer’s market on Saturdays, so that’s where it was until the first of February of this year,” Peters said.
Although she no longer sells truffles at the Athens Farmers Market, her Court Street store is open four days a week and O’Chocolate also is available for purchase at the Village Bakery & Café. Her bars have even expanded into the Columbus market, and are now sold at Bexley Natural Market, Clintonville Community Market, Weiland’s Gourmet Market and Camelot Cellars.
“I really taught myself,” she explained. “It’s a trick finding the right amount of chocolate. I did a lot of reading, and videos and learned how to temper chocolate, which was the hardest part. And then I knew there were lots of local businesses I wanted to work with, and chocolates are the perfect delivery device to introduce local foods to all sorts of things.”
For more information and to view a list of O’Chocolate’s gourmet chocolate truffles, visit www.athenschocolate.com.