Vegan New England, Part 5: Divine Treasures
Heading back to New York from Massachusetts, I thought I’d multi-task. Though barely an hour above New York, I hardly ever find myself with time to spare in Connecticut. So after a requisite google search, I found a interesting vegan lead, a mid-way stop before home. Divine Treasures, a vegan gluten-free chocolate shop in Manchester, Connecticut, seemed promising, but sometimes it is difficult to tell from a website. A hopeless pessimist at times, I was a bit wary approaching the store space, in between the cigar shop and Chinese take-out. Who knew that I was about to discover a vegan chocolate heaven? A store front unlike any place I had ever seen?So what’s in the box? Well, chocolates so decadent and delicious, I could barely contain my excitement in the store. The premium quality, the clean taste and exquisite texture were just a few of the things that completely floored me. The selection was another. Sure, I’ve been to chocolatiers with a few vegan options–a couple of vegan truffles–but this was unbelievable. There were two, yes two, showcases of vegan chocolates, CARAMELS and truffles paired and filled with things like hazelnut butter, candied ginger, ganache, coconut, orange peel, almond butter and a variety of high-end jellies. I know you want to see more, so let’s do this.
Chocolate heaven. The lovely ladies behind the counter took time to recommend their favorites and top-sellers. But I was so distracted, staring at these gorgeous babies behind the glass. They let me sample some pieces which sealed the deal. I had walked into Heaven on Earth. Add the fact that they source local and organic ingredients when possible and stock the store with handmade gifts, steering clear from “Made in China”, and you got a socially responsible supplier of, hands-down, the best vegan chocolate I have ever tasted. I want the vegan foodie community to get their butts to Manchester, Connecticut as soon as humanly possible.
I bought two boxes of chocolate, scrambling to make the right decisions. It was so difficult to decide. That is why I was so delighted when the owner gave me a bag of other chocolates to sample. On the scale above is box one, approximately $16 or so. Aren’t they beautiful? They do special events too–showers, weddings, etc–and make their own pretty personalized packaging.
Check their website for the complete descriptions of all their chocolates. Again, the variety and quality of ingredients is just awe-inspiring.
You think that is it but then you realize they have… soft serve. Their own amazing soft serve. Is it redundant if I tell you it is the best I’ve had. I sampled a swirl of chocolate and vanilla topped with hot fudge and caramel and covered in their chocolate nibs. This caramel is just divine. I never thought I’d find a good vegan caramel. Divine Treasures’ texture, sweetness level and pull is the work of a genius.
And here is the genius, Diane Blanchette-Wagemann. Her product speaks volumes about her talent, her palate and her values. I look forward to tasting more of her amazing creations and spreading the word about her shop. Tell one, tell all: there is a vegan Heaven on Earth, and it’s in Manchester, Connecticut.