Chocolate lovers say: ‘How sweet it is’

Feb. 09, 2013 @ 10:20 PM

Sweet!

That was the verdict Saturday as chocolate lovers got the best of both worlds: their favorite treat without charge.

It was the annual chocolate tasting at One World Market on Ninth Street that included 30 kinds of chocolate, there for the taking.

April Ravelli, executive director of the nonprofit store, spent three hours the previous night breaking up 50 bars into small bits. By midafternoon Saturday, more than 200 people had indulged in the “fair trade” chocolate produced in Ghana, Dominican Republic and “all over Latin America.”

There was something for every taste – white chocolate with strawberries, dark chocolate with raspberries, ginger and orange and milk chocolate with toffee.

Diane Byrne of Chapel Hill bought two bars – one with dark chocolate hazelnut truffle and a second with mint dark chocolate.

Byrne said she likes to buy “fair trade” chocolate because she knows it comes from farmers who were paid a fair wage and that no child labor was used.

Christa Carter of Durham snapped up bars of white chocolate with strawberries.

“I’m a real chocolate lover,” she said. “I’m going home and share it with my housemates.”

Carmen Palmer of Durham didn’t know about the free chocolate until she walked into the store.

“It was just a happy coincidence,” Palmer said. “I like dark chocolate, especially. I keep dark chocolate chips in the refrigerator for when I have a sweet tooth.”

Fifteen-year-old Hannah McKinnis of Durham loves white chocolate the most. Her bars included plain white chocolate and those with toffee crunch and strawberries.

For Celia Litovsky of Durham, chocolate can be a sort of medicine, and she was on her way out of the store with eight bars, some of which she planned to share with a sick friend.

“I tried Mexican chocolate for the first time,” she said, “and it is absolutely delicious. It’s sort of like eating coffee grounds.”

David Young of Durham brought his three children – two young sons and a daughter – and said the free sampling “was too appealing to pass up.”

“I sampled more than my dental policy probably allows,” he said. “I’ll be working it off this evening.”

His son, 9-year-old Bryce Gerdeman, enjoyed the white and milk chocolate, but not the ones with sea salt. “The coffee one was OK, but I’m not used to coffee,” he said.

Bryce’s brother, 10-year-old Ian Young, sampled a dozen types of chocolate, and decided his favorite was caramel crunch.

“I liked each of them in different ways,” he said. “I like the caramel crunch because I love crunches, and it tasted exactly like caramel, and I love caramel.”

Ian said he might ask his father to buy him some bars, “but I don’t want to bug him too much.”