Have you ever seen chocolate so exquisite, it looks more like art than food? There’s a chocolate factory in South Barrington that not only produces these bite-sized beauties, starting tonight, they’ll be teaching classes on how to make them.
These are the first chocolate making classes being offered at Anna Shea Chocolates since they opened at the South Barrington Arboretum back in September of 2008. There are two classes on the table and the price per person is $50 or $58, if you want to enjoy a glass of wine with your chocolate.
The first 90-minute class, called “Temper! Temper!” will take place from 7-8:30 tonight. Chocolatiers will demonstrate the process of chocolate tempering on a marble slab. Guests will then be able to dip their own strawberries, marshmallows and other treats to taste the homemade chocolate. The second class is called “Tempting Truffles” and it’s a two hour class. Students will learn techniques to make molded chocolates from start to finish. That includes making, filling, hand dipping, lining, capping, painting and rolling chocolates in delicious toppings.
Anna Shea is not your average chocolate shop. It’s named after the creator of these fine chocolate recipes, a young woman named Anna Shea from Finland. Anna moved to New York when she was 19 and started working as an au pair. To supplement her income, she got a part time job as a chocolatier and realized that making chocolate is her passion.
Anna Shea went on to study chocolate throughout Europe before returning to the US to open her own chocolate stores in New York City. Today, those stores have closed and now the only one that remains is the Anna Shea chocolate shop, lounge and factory in South Barrington which was opened by a relative who lives here. It’s a luxury business and people are eating it up!
When you walk in, you first see the retail part of the operation which is luxuriously decorated with chandeliers and fans. You can purchase cupcakes, gelato, cheese and crackers, martinis, wine and, of course, chocolate.
Then you walk through gorgeous French doors into a beautiful chocolate lounge with a double sided fireplace where you can sit and enjoy a drink and delicious dessert. And then there’s the factory, where chocolatiers hand make, hand paint and hand fill all of the signature chocolates sold at the store. What a fun thing to do with a date!
They only allow six people per class and tonight’s class is already full. But here are the upcoming classes and times, but you should call right away if you want to get a spot.
August 6th | 7-8:30PM | “Temper! Temper!”
August 20th | 4-9PM | “Tempting Truffles”
September 10th | 7-8:30PM | “Temper! Temper!”
September 24th | 7-9PM | “Tempting Truffles”
October 8th | 7-8:30PM | “Temper! Temper!”
October 22nd | 7-9PM | “Tempting Truffles”
They ask that you arrive 15 minutes before the start of the session and participants will get 15% off any purchases made the night of their class. For more information about Anna Shea chocolates, visit their website at AnnaSheaChocolates.com or call them at 847-428-5446. You’ll find Anna Shea at the South Barrington Arboretum, 100 W. Higgins Road, which is at the corner of Higgins and Route 59.