A Fredericksburg, TX Chocolate Shop: Why we are different
When we launched our business plan to build a chocolate shop and factory in Fredericksburg, Texas, we started with one central goal: to make people happy. And a big part of Hill Country Chocolate was about creating an experience around chocolate in the Texas Hill Country - and that meant doing something bold and different.
Why open Hill Country Chocolate in Fredericksburg, Texas?
The Texas Hill Country is known for its incredible wine-making, and it is a big part of what makes the Hill Country Chocolate experience so unique. The landscape has long inspired those looking to explore their craft, from the rolling hills to the lush vineyards. In Fredericksburg, TX, there are more than 40 wineries, and our chocolate shop is just as much about highlighting the culture of this area as it is about creating a delicious product.
What can you expect to experience at Hill Country Chocolate?
We allow visitors to see the chocolate-making process from oversized windows in our retail store and tasting room. And we are liberal about giving out a free sample of our products since tasting chocolate is part of that experience!
We profile three general approaches to chocolate manufacturing: locally created bean-to-bar craft-made chocolate, European-style confections such as truffles, bonbons, and gianduja, and familiar American chocolates such as caramels, turtles, marshmallows, and even chocolate-covered graham crackers.
What is bean-to-bar chocolate?
Bean-to-bar chocolate, also known as craft-made chocolate, is a chocolate production method that begins with cocoa beans. The beans are carefully sourced and selected for their quality before they are roasted to bring out the flavor.
It starts with ethically sourced cacao, or cocoa beans, imported to Hill Country Chocolate through cooperatives. Because of their single origin, these are used to make dark and milk chocolate and have a unique and delicious flavor profile.
Cacao is sourced from Uganda, Columbia, Belize, and several other countries based on the flavors and tastes that our chocolate makers are creating. This cacao is processed on-site with organic sugar to make chocolate bars for sale in our retail and online stores.
The 290 Bar
One of the most popular chocolate bars is our 290 Bar, a 56% dark chocolate bar created to compliment the fantastic wine from the Texas Wine Trail.
What are European-style chocolate confections?
Exploring the classic confections of a European chocolate shop is like visiting another world entirely. From gianduja - a smooth, creamy blend of hazelnuts and chocolate - to exquisite truffles crafted from ganache, there is something extraordinary about the flavors created with patience and perfectionism in these locations. Hazelnuts are an iconic component in these European chocolates, often being chopped within gianduja or rolled into truffles to give the treats an unforgettable nutty crunch.
With so much attention paid to the perfect marriage of flavors in a single bite, the classic chocolates from any European chocolate shop offer a unique experience.
What are typical examples of American confections?
Delightful caramels, buttercreams, and chocolate turtles: some of the most classic American confections lovingly appreciated by both young and old alike. Caramels, a traditional treat, can take on numerous forms: chewy or buttery soft caramel squares and caramel-filled chocolates are just a few.
Buttercreams offer an indulgent, velvety texture that lingers on your taste buds. What's more, they come in an array of stunning colors and flavors to be admired.
But perhaps the most enticing treat of them all are chocolate turtles with their decadent layer of caramel-enrobed pecans atop smooth milk or dark chocolate. At Hill Country Chocolate, we use native Texas hard-shell pecans because of their intense flavor. As much as one might try to resist these delicacies, becoming entranced in each comforting bite's sheer warmth and sweetness makes it nearly impossible.
But you also offer wine, correct?
Yes, wine is an integral part of our chocolate experience. We proudly offer some exceptional wines through our sister partnership with DKM Cellars. Our current portfolio has a wide variety to satisfy just about every taste.
We offer a red wine and a Lambrusco sparkling wine that we make in concert with legendary Italian winemaker Flavio Andreucci. Other wines include a Moscato d'Asti, sauvignon blanc, rosé, and sparkling wine from Sonoma County, California.
Our wines can be enjoyed in our tasting room or while you shop in our retail store or watch our chocolate-making process. It is common for guests to sip on a glass of our Tuscan red wine and sample our single-origin dark chocolate. The taste combinations and flavors available by combining wine and chocolate are endless.
How should you plan your visit?
You don't need reservations to visit our chocolate factory! Drop-ins are welcome anytime, and seating is available to sample our wine and all the chocolates you want. Our friendly staff will provide various choices to create an enjoyable and unique experience.
We are located just off the Hwy 290 wine trail on Industrial Loop. Check out this link for easy directions fo our factory, retail store, and tasting room.
Want an amazing experience?
If you want to immerse yourself in chocolate and wine, consider our Premiere Wine & Chocolate Experience. Written in Texas Monthly and D Magazine, this fantastic experience in our tasting room includes multiple styles and types of chocolates and wine. A chocolatier will host our Premiere Experiences and guide you through a detailed discussion. You can make reservations at www.hillcountrychocolate.com.
Join us in Fredericksburg, Texas, for a fantastic experience with your friends, indulge your sweet tooth, shop for gifts, visit our chocolatier, and have fun!