Santa’s elves have some competition when it comes to making holiday treats for good boys and girls.
The folks at Specialty Sweets in Bangor are open seven days a week during the month of December, just to keep up with the demand for Christmas sweets.
As TV5’s Joy Hollowell discovered, there’s actually an art to choosing the right chocolate.
":We do see more people in the month of December than we do all 11 months combined.":
And they all come in for one thing…candy.
Specialty Sweets offers it all, from gourmet truffles to nostalgic favorites like ribbon candy. Owner Matthew St. Jean says their most popular item right now is a chocolate lover’s Maine Lobster Dinner, complete with lemon wedges and melted butter. Nearly everything is made right at the Stillwater Avenue store.
":The comment of the century is ‘How do you do it’ And the way we always answer is, it’s just like working at a 5-star restaurant. The first day you start, sure you want to order the lobster and steak and great pieces of fish. But your second, third, fourth week, maybe the first year, you start to bring your own lunch, and by the end, you’re definitely not even eating at the restaurant.":
Like fine wine at a five-star restaurant, so is fine chocolate.
":It’s absolutely a science and it’s taken us almost two years to perfect.":
First says St. Jean, is the smell.
":It does say a lot about the quality of the ingredients, how it was made, if it was made correctly. Another huge part if its mouth feel. When you put a piece of chocolate in your mouth, you are expecting it to melt a particular way. And I would rate that just as highly as taste, because if you have a piece of chocolate that was tempered incorrectly, it may not melt the correct way in your mouth.":
St. Jean is serious when it comes to chocolate making…but this young entrepreneur has a better description for his career.
":Honestly, all we can say is, it’s pretty sweet.":
Specialty Sweets also offers a line of homemade candy canes in all kinds of flavors, including sugar free.