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Local For Cocoa

DESIRABLE DISHES Don’t wait until dessert to indulge in a sweet something: try a chocolate-infused entree that is sure to enhance your dining experience. Entice the palette with the creatively concocted Muscovy duck with chocolate demi-glace, $28 at Sequel. For the adventurous, a mole ice-pop—chili-spiked dark chocolate with basil bud-studded pumpkin puree—is a constant on chef Claudio Aprile’s tasting menu at Colborne Lane.

INDULGE YOURSELF True chocoholics know there are few things better than a delicate, expertly crafted truffle. Fortunately, Toronto is home to many gourmet chocolatiers who can enable your addiction. Watch as truffles, $2 each, and other mouth-watering confections are made before your eyes at Xococava (1560 Yonge St., 416-979-9916). Experience the unequalled taste of champagne truffles, $45 for a 16-piece box, from Teuscher, which are made with all-natural ingredients and flown in weekly from Zurich, Switzerland. Or if you’re a Belgian-chocolate aficionado, the house-made truffles, $1.50 each, from LeFeuvre’s (683 Mount Pleasant Rd., 416-480-1878) come in flavours like amaretto, hazelnut, Irish cream and raspberry.

CHOCOLATE TOUCH Who says chocolate is only for eating? Get the full benefits of this delicacy with the Chocolate Truffle Experience, $75, at Elizabeth Milan Premier Day Spa. The tempting treatment includes chocolate exfoliation, a pedicure, a chocolate foot mask and foot massage with chocolate lotion that softens the skin and elevates the mood. A truffle and hot chocolate make for a perfect end to the pampering.

HIGH TEA Calm the senses with chocolate-laced tea that is as soothing as it is relaxing. At Rosedale’s fragrant House of Tea (1015 Yonge St., 416-922-1226), cocoa buffs should try the Chocolato, a black tea infused with dark chocolate, $12.95 per 100 g. Or discover the Chocolate Escape, a combo of chocolate, coconut, yerba maté and rooibos at Tealish (198 Walnut Ave., 416-203-3301), where you can purchase either a loose-leaf sampler, $5.75 for 50 g, or a fresh-brewed cup to go.

SWEET FRANÇAISE Why not do as the French and have your chocolat as part of a delectable crepe? Stop in for a classic nutella-filled version, $5.25, at Café Crepe (246 Queen St. W., 416-260-1611), or swing by cleverly named I Feel Like Crepe (605 College St., 416-832-5679) for the sophisticated Noele, $9, which oozes dark chocolate and is topped with luscious strawberries. Chic gallery-cum-eatery Art Square Café also offers a savoury option: a parmesan and romano cheese crepe with grilled chicken and organic Mayan dark chocolate, $11.50.

For more chocolate goodness, check out part one of Local for Cocoa.—Jodie Shupac

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