“My momma always said, life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get.” proclaimed Tom Hanks’ character in the hit movie, Forrest Gump. But, subscribe to The Chocolate Stag Chocolate Club, and you’ll receive a little box of chocolate heaven through your letterbox each and every month – and you’ll know exactly what ‘you’re gonna get’.
For many years the art of the chocolatier was solidly associated with France and Belgium, however in recent years the UK has seen a dramatic rise in the number of artisan chocolatiers. And, two years ago, East Lothian’s David and Angela Cockerton joined this renaissance, taking an artisanal approach to chocolate with their handmade chocolate business – The Chocolate Stag. Chocolate was not a new thing for the couple, David and Angela previously ran a successful handmade chocolate business before they moved to the Middle East. Relaunching their chocolate business was always part of David and Angela’s plan, when they returned to the UK and opened their small luxury hotel – Garleton Lodge. The Chocolate Stag followed and quickly become part of East Lothian’s rapidly growing artisan food and drink scene.
Everyone has their favourite shade of chocolate – dark, milk or white. Whether you are an aficionado who refuses anything below 70% or a milk chocolate lover, the one thing that binds us all together is the chocolate we love all comes from the same place, the cocoa bean. Angela says; “Our range of handmade chocolates includes everyone’s favourites using white, milk and dark chocolate. All our ingredients are fresh, quite often locally sourced where we can, and contain absolutely no preservatives. You really can taste the difference!”
Angela’s skill lies in creating a range of truly unique and creative flavour pairings. Think, strawberry spheres and salted caramels to dark chocolate spiced rum truffles, dark chocolate baby Guinness cups to gin and tonic truffles, made with local Fidra Gin. Her picture-perfect chocolate boxes containing either 6, 12 or 24 individual chocolates and truffles quickly became a huge success, with customers able to buy online or from selected East Lothian retailers. Angela has recently added mini bars, small bars and chocolate slabs to The Chocolate Stag’s range. All lovingly handmade with the finest ingredients, they include mouth watering combinations such as; dark chocolate with rum-soaked raisins in dark chocolate ganache, milk chocolate filled with soft caramel and sea salt, dark chocolate slab with freeze-dried raspberries and roasted pecan pieces, and Angela’s classic Millionaire’s – a milk chocolate mini bar filled with caramel and shortcake.
With the launch of The Chocolate Stag’s Chocolate Club, you can now indulge in a regular delivery of chocolate treats or find a gift that’s out of the ordinary for the person who has everything. Sign up, and every month you’ll receive a stylish letter-box friendly selection of your choice of chocolates or you can opt for the mystery box. Choose from a 3, 6 or 12 month subscription. Angela adds; “We really can’t think of a single person who wouldn’t appreciate handmade chocolate delivered to their door. Of course, we wouldn’t judge if you signed up for your very own chocolate subscription, it’s a great way to ensure you’ve always got your favourite chocolate on standby, should the moment strike.”
And what’s more The Chocolate Stag also offer a loyalty programme where you can collect chocolate points from each purchase, these can then be redeemed to purchase even more chocolate. For chocolate addicts, this is quite literately – the dream.