10 of the Best for Special Treats - Irish Handmade Chocolates

Our national chocoholism is no secret and it revs up to top gear at Easter – when it’s not just about eggs, but all kinds of symbols of spring - but theme-free top quality chocolates are an increasinly popular all-year treat. While Ireland’s growing reputation for quality chocolate is largely thanks to excellent mainstream producers such as Butlers, Lily O’Briens, and Lir, smaller-scale chocolate specialists are making a big impact as well. We’ve selected just ten of Ireland’s growing band of top chocolatiers, who produce everything from exquisite creations for the most discerning recipient to fun family gifts - and all of those below offer an online shopping and delivery service for your gifting needs.  

Arcane Chocolate 
Mulhuddart Dublin 15
Tel: 085 851 8598; Email: erik@arcanechocolate.com
Known for his exceptional artistry and exquisite flavour combinations, Arcane Chocolate’s Erik Van der Veken has created a fantastical collection of luxury Easter eggs for the most discerning of chocolate lovers. Drawing on his whimsical imagination, the Dublin-based Belgian chocolatier’s exciting collection features large multi-faceted eggs in sensational designs and miniature selection boxes containing smaller versions. One of only two Cacao Barry brand ambassadors in Ireland, Erik’s luxury products are made from their 100% sustainably sourced chocolate. Deliveries in the Greater Dublin/Bray area, also available for collection at Arcane’s lab in Mulhuddart.
SHOP HERE: https://arcanechocolate.com/shop/

Bean and Goose 
Ferns Co Wexford
Tel: 086 185 7558; Email: hello@beanandgoose.ie
The concept of chocolate as a seasonal product is new to many but - citing childhood memories of happy chocolate associations and a passion for using seasonal, natural ingredients as their inspirations – sisters Karen and Natalie Keane’s high quality ‘bean to bar’ chocolate is made from organic single origin beans and flavoured with home-grown and foraged plants that reflect and celebrate the Irish seasons. Their delicious traditionally tempered Bean and Goose chocolate is produced at the farm where they grew up in Co Wexford, and sustainability informs everything from the ingredients to the recyclable packaging. Their gorgeous range includes some utterly irresistible Easter treats, some for sharing; prices from €19.50;all Ireland delivery is offered.

SHOP HERE: https://beanandgoose.ie/collections/all-products 

Lorge Chocolatier
Bonane Kenmare Co Kerry
Lorge Chocolatier was established by the acclaimed French Pastry Chef Benoit Lorge in Kenmare, in 2003, and he has since received plenty of well-earned praise for the luxury, hand-made confectionery that he creates using top quality ingredients. The range includes beautifully presented boxes, truffles, bars, hot chocolate, chocolate spreads, and other confectionery such as nougat and marshmallows – and seasonal specialities including Easter eggs (in various sizes, filled and unfilled, from about €9.25) and some cute novelties including ‘Bunny Carrote’ (a chocolate bunny clutching a whole carrot, €7.95). Chocolate courses are also available for professionals and amateur enthusiasts and there are shops at the factory (Bonane) and in Kenmare Town.
SHOP HERE: https://lorge.ie/shop

The Chocolate Shop 
English Market Cork
Tel: 021 4254448; Email: info@chocolateshop.ie
A passion for chocolate and a mission to stock the largest range of the world’s finest chocolate under one roof led to Rosemary Daly opening her delicious shop in Cork’s famous English market, back in 2000. The Easter range is just a small part of the wide selection, offering half egg shells, in milk, dark and white chocolate, filled with a variety of their handmade chocolates. Excellent value, with prices beginning at €12.50 (delivery by courier). Sourcing ‘the best quality chocolate from the best artisan chocolatiers throughout the world’ including Irish producers, the range includes organic, 100% cocoa bars & powders, gluten-free and diabetic chocolate
SHOP HERE: https://www.chocolate.ie/shop-chocolate.html

Hazel Mountain Chocolate 
Bell Harbour Co Clare
Tel: 065 707 8847 Email: info@hazelmountainchocolate.com
Although it is well signed near north Clare’s famous Flaggy Shore, John and Kasha Connolly’s charming little chocolate factory, bakery and café still comes as a surprise. John, who knows The Burren like the back of his hand, is well known as a walking guide, and this enterprising couple’s businesses are run from the cottage farmhouse that John inherited from his grandmother. Since opening in 2014, they have - as they say themselves - been making waves on the Irish and international chocolate scene, thanks to their commitment to using local, sustainable, natural ingredients, sourcing the best cacao beans from ‘little guy’ cocoa bean farmers, and also due to the charming and highly educational set-up at their must-visit factory (tours available). Easter treats include a beautiful Wild Atlantic Easter Egg.

SHOP HERE: https://www.hazelmountainchocolate.com/collections/all

Chez Emily
The Ward Co Dublin
Tel: 01 835 2252; Email: sales@chezemily.ie
Ferdinand Vandaele and Helena Hemeryck have crafted their exquisite Chez Emily handmade chocolates near Mabestown, since 1996. During that time the business has grown and there’s now also a shop, Chocolate Boutique, in Ashbourne, Co Meath (Mon-Sat), but the ethos is unchanged and their sustainable cottage industry still uses carefully sourced ingredients and the original family recipes to produce chocolates that are handmade with care. The range includes dairy free, gluten free and vegan chocolate and, in addition to the 30 varieties that are available year round, there are seasonal specialties including an Easter selection ranging from a Happy Easter Greeting bar at about €4, to an Easter Family Box at €30; delivery within Ireland takes between 1 and 5 working days.
SHOP HERE: https://chezemily.ie/shop/

Grá Chocolates 
Kilchreest Co Galway
Tel: 085 2294653 Email: hello@grachocolates.com
The 2019 winner of the Euro-Toques Young Chef of the Year title, pastry chef Gráinne Mullins, was working in an exciting new restaurant when Covid hit – and, with the closure of hospitality, so began her beautiful Grá Chocolates business. Following the Euro-Toques principles of sourcing locally and sustainably (“great taste comes from the finest ingredients”), Gráinne works in small batches and her hand-painted and polished bonbons take three days to create. Locally and ethically produced ingredients are also used for the fillings, and the current range includes some stunning Easter eggs, which can be pre-ordered with a selected shipping date.
SHOP HERE: https://grachocolates.com/shop/

Skelligs Chocolate
Ballinskelligs Co Kerry
Tel: 066 9479119 Email: info@skelligschocolate.com
Colm Healy's high quality chocolate operation is scenically located at the remote St Finian's Bay on the Ring of Kerry, overlooking the Skellig islands, and its unique appeal - together with Noelle Campbell-Sharp's wonderful Cill Rialaig Centre https://cillrialaigartscentre.com/ (art exhibitions, shop & café), which is nearby - has made the Skellig Ring a destination for families on holiday, food lovers and art collectors alike. Uniquely, the open plan Skelligs and Cocoa Bean Chocolates production kitchen allows visitors to watch the process (and taste samples) while taking in the dramatic scenery. Specialties available all year include 60 varieties of truffles (flavours change with the seasons) while limited editions include the Easter range of solid eggs (Teeling whiskey solid egg from €20, for example), shell eggs and hampers (from €37.50). A great place to visit, and also a good online service.
SHOP HERE: https://skelligschocolate.com/buy-chocolate-online/ 

Truffle Fairy 
Thomastown Co Kilkenny
Tel: 087 286 2634 E-mail: info@trufflefairy.ie
There is a touch of magic about chef Mary Teehan’s chocolate creations, and chocoholics visiting the Kilkenny area should seek out both the chocolates themselves and the lovely Truffle Fairy Chocolate Café and shop, where you can see the production kitchen (and you may also to get a complimentary truffle with your coffee). While not a novelty producer - Mary is famous for luscious truffles and chocolate fudge - the range also includes chocolate bars and chocolate barks (bars covered with dried fruits and/or nuts), cakes and cookies. The freshness and quality of her ethically sourced ingredients speaks for itself – and well-earned accolades include Great Taste Awards gold stars for several of her exotic truffles and her chocolate brownies. The main business is in Thomastown, but there is also a lovely shop on Ormonde Street, in Kilkenny City. Also sold at farmers’ markets and speciality stores including the lovely Glasrai and Goodies at Gowran.
SHOP HERE: https://trufflefairy.ie/shop-2/

Torc Chocolates 
New Street Longford
Tel: 043 3348277; Email: torccafefoodhall@yahoo.ie
Ruth McGarry-Quinn’s Torc Café and Food Hall has been a good reason to take a journey break in Longford Town since 1997 and, as well as enjoying the wholesome food, few customers will leave without something from the growing range of Torc Chocolates. Although the range includes all the most popular treats – truffles, bars, sharing slabs, wedding favours –they’re best known for novelties, especially their chocolate high heels also produced as an Easter version, or paired with a handbag. Ruth also runs “Torc Chocolate Experience” workshops that can be tailored to suit a family day out, school trip, corporate day, teambuilding, or a party (e.g. a hen or birthday).
SHOP HERE: https://torcchocolates.ie/collections



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