As online shopping expands, becomes more pervasive we’ve become lazier. But for me half the fun is actually looking for and visiting new chocolate shops. There’s nothing like the buzz you get when you walk down an untrodden street and catching sight of the sign protruding from the wall with the world ‘chocolate’ on it.
The purpose of these mystery shopping exercises is to let people know what the chocolate shops are like. If you’re buying chocolate for others then when you visit a chocolate shop you don’t want to be harassed or feel inferior or intimidated if you don’t know what the chocolate terms are, you’ll want help and guidance to select the most suitable chocolates if you ask for it.
For those that are frequent purchasers from chocolate shops you’ll want to feel valued, warm and welcome when you first step foot into a new one. You’ll want to know what chocolate selection they’ll have and if you get value for money.
I tried to buy a variety of chocolate truffles, dark chocolate, white chocolate, milk chocolate and the odd chocolate novelty if I could find any that got my attention.
Solving all those questions is the purpose of these mystery shopper visits.
So here’s the list of the chocolate shops I’ve visited and links to their reviews and details – click on their name to read the review.
Chocolate Shops In London
Paul A. Young
Visited: 33 Camden Passage, Islington, London N1 8EA, Tel: +44 (0)20 7424 5750
Given: Chocolate Brownie – £2.95, 15 chocolate House Collection £22, 64% Maldon Sea sold dark chocolate artisan bar – £3.50 and a caramel crunch milk chocolate artisan bar – £3.50.
Jeff de Bruges
13 South Molton Street, London, W1K 5QW
Bought: three 80g bars – 85% cacao Ouganda, 64% cacao Perou, 43% cacao Venezuela totalling £13.15 and a bag of mini cacao pods of various cacao ratios at £6.75. Total cost £ 19.90.
14 Princess Arcade, SW1Y 6DS
Bought: Choxi+ 70% Dark Chocolate with Mint – £1.99, 85% Dark Chocolate bar – £3.00 and a 33% milk chocolate bar – £3.00. Total cost: £7.99.
Charbonnel Et Walker
One The Royal Arcade, 28 Old Bond Street, London, W1S 4BT
Bought: Mint Truffles 115g – £10.95 and a Pink Marc de Champagne Bar 75g – £3.50. Total Cost: £14.45
4 South Molton Street, W1K 5QD, London
Bought: Milk Chocolate “Speculoos” 100g – £5.25 and a Milk chocolate “Feuilletine” 100g – £5.25. Total cost £10.50
75 New Bond Street, London, W1S 1RU
Bought: 4 piece box – £4.50.
5 Motcomb Street, Belgravia, London, SW1X 8JU
Bought: Quail Eggs & Jersey New Potatoes & Fresh Mint. Total Cost £17.00
198 Ebury Street, Belgravia, London, SW1W 8UN
Bought: Small sea salt caramel bar and the cinnamon bar were £3.50 each abd a large orange and pistachio bar at £8. Total cost £15.
Fortnum & Mason
181 Piccadilly, London, W1A 1ER
Bought: Rose Champagne Truffles 125g – £15, No. 37 Mexican Mole Spice 70% Dark Chocolate 70g – £5.00 and a No.15 Papua New Guinea 70% Dark Chocolate 70g – £5.00 Total cost £25.00
Trip cost: 166.93 – I spent a lot less than I thought
Chocolate Shops In Bath, Avon
The House of Minerva
14 Cheap Street, City Centre, Bath, BA1 1NA.
Bought: 200g of chocolates – £12