Sweet Treats: Satisfying that sweet tooth in South County
Published in South Fort Myers Community Lifestyles August/September 2014
Everyone loves a sweet treat every now and again (and again). Southwest Florida offers a few sweet destinations where individuals have an opportunity to indulge themselves with some incredibly decadent chocolates, confections and other tasty tidbits that will satisfy their sweet cravings.
The Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory
Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory owner Steven Jones said he and his wife, Triston, opened the store at Miromar Outlets the Saturday before Memorial Day this year. The couple owned a Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory in Omaha, Nebraska, for three years before moving to Southwest Florida.
Steven said after their lease expired, they started looking for their next destination when the corporate office shed some light on the location at Miromar Outlet.
“I jumped on a plane, came down for 24 hours and looked at the space,” Steven said.
The couple attended Missouri Western State University and participated in an entrepreneurial program through the business school that awarded them a store at the end of a competition. Jones said they had a benefactor who had given them a loan for five years for the store. The circumstances, he said was “as long as you get that loan paid off, the store becomes yours.”
The Joneses paid off the loan in less than two years.
“That’s how we got into the Rocky Mountain franchise system,” he said.
Although the Joneses are a part of a franchise, the Miromar Outlets store is a family-owned small business.
Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory is known for its oversized pieces of chocolate.
Steven said after a gentleman accidently made larger pieces of chocolate and it sold, the habit stuck more than 30 years ago.
The store offers all types of chocolates, ranging from single pieces to packaged collections of sweets. Tempt your taste buds with truffles, bears on a stick, chocolate-dipped marshmallows, chocolate- dipped strawberries, English toffee and giant peanut butter buckets.
A favorite of his is the chocolate dipped potato chip – sweet and salty.
“It’s a salted potato chip that is dipped in chocolate,” Steven said of the salty sweet treat.
He said his wife’s favorite sweets are the peanut butter fingers because of the smooth and creamy peanut butter engulfed in a thin layer of chocolate.
Rocky Mountain also carried 12 flavors of hand dipped Blue Bell ice cream and more than 12 gourmet caramel apples.
In addition, Steven said they make all of the fudge in the store on a big marble slab the traditional, old fashioned way, as well as the caramel from scratch.
Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory is located in Section F, next to the mall office and near Subway and the playground area of Miromar Outlets, at 10801 Corkscrew Road, Suite 189.
The store is open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., Monday through Saturday, and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday. For more information or to place an order or special reservation, call 239-949- 6757.
Norman Love Confections
Norman Love Confections began offering fine chocolates in 2001, when Norman Love first introduced his handcrafted chocolates to the Fort Myers community.
Love learned the craft of making pastries in France and was the executive chef for luxury resorts of The Beverly Hills Hotel and the The Ritz- Carlton. Throughout his 13 years as the corporate executive pastry chef, Love opened 30 hotel and resort pastry kitchens, both internationally and domestically, before deciding to enter into the private enterprise in 2001.
Norman Love Confections uses the finest ingredients to create more than 35,000 individually hand-painted, gourmet chocolates daily. The chocolates are shaped in hand-crafted molds and turned into true pieces of edible art.
Sharon Arnold of Gravina Smith Matte and Arnold Marketing and Public Relations said every year Love changes the signature flavors and often reintroduces some of the wellloved, retired flavors back into the rotation.
She said there are 36 signature flavors, including dark, milk and white chocolates, as well as elegant truffles.
“The newest flavors are bananas foster, caramel macchiato, creamy peanut butter truffle, French vanilla truffle, Spanish almond, nougat and tropical cream,” Arnold said.
If sugar-free is what you are after (a variety that is often difficult to find, or when it’s found, it’s pretty tasteless), you’re in luck; Norman Love Confections also offers a savory assortment to satisfy the taste buds of those who require less sugar in their diets.
These specialty items – and all other Norman Love confections – are available as wedding favors, gift baskets, engraved with corporate logos and customordered selections are now available, also, courtesy of Norman Love Confections’ specialty chefs.
The award-winning confection company also offers annual and limited edition holiday flavors.
Norman Love Confections BLACK, an ultra-premium line of intensely dark chocolates, has been added to the assortment of sweets. BLACK is made from chocolates from five of the finest growing regions of the world.
The first Norman Love Confections BLACK Sipping Chocolate, inspired by European traditions, can also be purchased to satisfy any sweet tooth.
Do you love the traditional treat, s’mores? In 2009, S’more Love by Norman Love Confections was launched. The tasty treat is filled with a crunchy fresh-baked graham cracker, light and fluffy homemade marshmallows and salted bourbon vanilla caramel.
Norman Love Confections Chocolate Salon and Artisan Gelato by Norman Love is located at 11380 Lindbergh Blvd., Fort Myers.
The salon is open from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, and from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m,. Saturdays. Artisan Gelato is open from 11:30 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Saturday.
For further information call 239- 561-7215 or visit NormanLoveConfections.com.