Give them chocolate! Your guide to delicious finds at area chocolate shops
Note: The contents of this guide were checked for accuracy when this article was updated on Nov. 27, 2018 at 11:01 a.m. We continually update the thousands of articles on OnMilwaukee.com, but it's possible some details, specials and offers may have changed. As always, we recommend you call first if you have specific questions for the businesses mentioned in the guide.
For centuries, chocolate has been a classic choice for gifting.
In the 12th century Aztecs presented chocolate in liquid form, believing that cacao beans were a gift from the gods. Meanwhile, in the 18th century, Casanova called chocolate the "elixir of love" and drank it instead of Champagne. By the 20th century, chocolate was a common holiday gift. Even Queen Victoria was known to offer gifts of chocolate to her soldiers during the holiday season.
Today, chocolate is as compelling a gift as ever. And Milwaukee is rich with chocolatiers and candy makers, each of whom create their own unique style of indulgent treats. And those treats are perfect for last minute gifting during the holiday season!
Whether it's a stocking stuffer, hostess gift or a sweet treat for your significant other, this guide will assist you in narrowing in on the perfect indulgence for the holidays.
3840 N. Fratney St., (414) 964-7327
At Burke Candy in Riverwest, Tim Burke is a third generation operator of his family company. You'll find numerous types of chocolate in the shop, but popular items include Burke's salted caramels, which are based on Burke's grandfather's original recipe and butter toffee, which is made with a recipe passed down from Burke's wife's grandmother.
Freese's Candy Shoppe
7312 W. Greenfield Ave., West Allis, (414) 453-5353
Freese's Candy Shoppe has been family owned and operated since 1928 when Otto Freese opened his retail shop and soda fountain in West Allis. Today it's a great spot to find any number of treats, though folks say their turtles are beyond compare. And if you're looking for fairy food, Freese's is as light and airy as it comes.
11235 Cedarburg Rd., (262) 292-8199
Mayfair Mall, 2500 N. Mayfair Rd., Wauwatosa, (414) 476-4100
Southridge Mall kiosk, 5300 76th St., Greenfield, (414) 432-0330
Founded by Cedarburg resident, Lindsay Erickson, GetHappy's mission is to spread joy through sweet treats. Among the treats created in-house at their Mequon location are pecan turtles, caramels, truffles and barks. The shop also carries a variety of other treats including caramel apples.
211 S. 2nd. St., (414) 223-0123
6538 W. North Ave. , Wauwatosa, (414) 323-4200
4525 N. Oakland Ave., Shorewood, (414) 332-2749
Among the new school chocolatiers in the city is Indulgence Chocolatiers, where truffles are artfully made by chocolatier Julie Waterman in flavors like balsamic fig, coconut habanero, blackberry espresso and cabernet. If you're looking for a gift that's uniquely Milwaukee, ask for their Milwaukee Chocolate bar, a dark chocolate sea salt bar enhanced with the image of the Milwaukee skyline. Their Walker's Point location also offers regular pairing classes for those who wish to explore how the flavors of chocolate pair with wine, beer, scotch and cheese.
Milwaukee Public Market, 400 N. Water St., (414) 223-4305
Kehr's has been making Milwaukeeans lives sweeter since 1930 when Pearl and B.D. Kehr opened up a retail store where they sold caramel corn and potato chips. When those items didn't pay the bills, the couple moved into making chocolates. And the rest, as they say, is history. Today, the shop at the Public Market sells a wide variety of sweet treats, including best-sellers like chocolate covered fairy food and mint meltaways.
Melt Chocolates Ltd.
Lincoln Warehouse, 2018 S. 1st St., Suite 120, (414) 939-6358
Among the newest chocolatiers to open retail locations in Milwaukee, Melt features creations from chocolatier Bjorn Rogness, a craftsman who has trained with some of the best chocolatiers from Europe and South America. His creations include butter crunch toffee, chocolate-coated cacao beans and imaginatively flavored truffles in flavors like strawberry milkshake, kashmir (with Indian spices) and the mango and habanero-infused Calypso.
7475 Harwood Ave., Wauwatosa, (414) 774-4940
If you're looking for old fashioned candies made from family recipes that have been passed down from generation to generation, look no further than Niemann's. This family-owned company has been making delights like barks, coconut clusters and peanut brittle since 1919. Among their most popular treats is chocolate coated almond butter toffee, which is sure to please the sweet and salty treat lover in your life.
7515 Harwood Ave., Wauwatosa, (414) 585-9996
On the other hand, if you're craving single origin chocolates from locales like Peru and Ecuador, look no farther than Tabal Chocolate. Owner Dan Bieser is among Milwaukee's only dedicated certified organic bean-to-bar chocolatiers, and his passions lie in creating high quality chocolate directly from cacao beans. Tabal's shop in Downtown Wauwatosa offers single origin chocolate bars, cocoa nibs and ingredients and a variety of housemade chocolate beverages. Bieser also hosts regular bean-to-bar chocolate making classes. Give someone a real treat with this collection of tea bars infused with natural flavor-bombs like peppermint rooibos, masala chai and matcha teas from Milwaukee's own Rishi Tea.
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