What do chocolate and athletes have in common? Apparently the ESPY awards, ESPN’s yearly award ceremony for athletes.
Daytona Beach based Angell & Phelps Chocolate Factory found itself in a unique situation in early July when it was named the official “gourmet chocolate sponsor” for the ESPYs. The chocolatiers were asked to provide their exotic truffles for the award show attendees.
Athletes such as nominees Dirk Nowitzki (NBA), Serena Williams (tennis), Jimmie Johnson (NASCAR), Lindsey Vonn (Olympic skier) and Cam Newton (football) were a few who found Angell & Phelps treats in their celebrity gift bags this year.
Angell & Phelps truffle variety pack includes:
- Milk Chocolate Truffles
- Rum Milk Chocolate Truffles
- Champagne Dark Chocolate Truffles
- Amaretto Milk Chocolate Truffles
- Raspberry Dark Chocolate Truffles
With a Groupon about to expire, we headed to the chocolate factory on Beach Street in old downtown Daytona Beach over the weekend.
The Chocolate Factory Tour
Angell & Phelps conducts a Chocolate Tour at least four times a day and we caught the last one at 4:00pm. Although fun, the tour isn’t very impressive. You look through windows into the area where potato chips are being coated with chocolate, where white chocolate is kept at a constant 89 degrees for melting, and where the chocolates are boxed up for shipping. Maybe it was just late in the day, or maybe the workers dislike being on display, but no one seemed very happy.
After the tour, we stood staring at all the choices behind the counter. To spend my $20 Groupon, we diversified — a slice of chocolate fudge, a slice of maple nut fudge, several Honey Bees ( similar to Turtles and even more delicious). The absolute best of our selections was the Dark Chocolate Covered Cherries. Now these were worth the trip. They are exquisite and some of the best candy we have ever tasted.
The Acclaimed Truffles
The Espy Truffles didn’t receive much enthusiasm from the crowd of 30 or more people at the last tour on Saturday. But I for one had to give them a try. I bought two — a champagne truffle and a raspberry truffle. They were delicious, but still couldn’t top the chocolate covered cherries.
I wasn’t overwhelmed by the Angell & Phelps chocolate or their small factory. It’s a very small operation and I’m surprised they were able to accommodate such a big order as the Espy Awards. The workers rarely smiled, one lady behind the candy counter rudely ignored us, and the overall feel of the store was less than exciting.
Will I go back? Possibly… for the chocolate covered cherries. However, my heart still belongs to a particular little chocolate shop in Zürich, Switzerland. And state side, it lies with a certain northern chocolate shop – Stefanelli’s Candies – located in Erie, Pennsylvania.