Friday, February 6, 2009

Valentine's Preparations

We’ve doubled our production at La Châtelaine this week in preparation for our romantics! When you consider that we’re crafting a line of approximately 45 chocolates now, that is a lot of ganache to make, squares and shells to enrobe, truffles to roll, cherries to dip, and moulds to prepare. I’m not even going to mention the Parisien Mendiants and chocolate Tablettes we’re behind on. I am trying to learn from a few mistakes last year – my first real “Valentines Day” experience in this chocolate industry. A chef had sternly warned me to “be prepared” because there would be a line of customers filed to the door and beyond, but I didn’t believe her until I witnessed it with my own eyes. The chocolates disappeared from the case at such at such an alarming pace, we thought we would sit down and bawl. And matters turned worse when we ran out of Valentine Heart-Boxes two days before the Day! Even though we pre-assembled boxes the night before, customers chose to patiently stand in line for twenty to thirty minutes. These were men and women who wanted to hand select their jewel-like chocolates, y’know. (*I’ll serve Venezuelan Hot Cocoa to our customers while they wait.)
So this year, I heeded that caution. I ordered roughly 600 Valentine Heart-Shaped boxes, along with candy pads, candy cups, extra chocolate, extra help, sticky notes, extra, extra, and extra. I even custom ordered “Je t’aime” ribbon, so very chic! Now, let’s just pray the disheveled economy doesn’t damper romance.

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