Tag Archives: Shrewsbury Market Hall

Chocolate Week 2012: 8th-14th October

It’s that time of year again when all Chocolate lovers can embrace Chocolate in all its glory. Chocolatiers up and down the country will be launching new products, holding special events and celebrating why we all love chocolate.

Currently I have lots in the pipeline; on Tuesday and Wednesday of Chocolate Week I will be holding special tastings in my shop. Customers will be able to try the different single origin chocolate I use as well as selected flavours from the counter.

On Friday and Saturday things will spice up with our much loved Hot Chocolates launching for the Autumn/Winter season, they will be available to take way. Packs containing all the ingredients and our recipe will be available, so customers can enjoy the Hot Chocolates at home.

We will also be making and sampling Chocolate Cocktails through Friday and Saturday. I’m currently sifting through lots of recipes trying to find an exciting mixture of delicious cocktails to tickle your taste buds!

I am also working on several new chocolates for our Shropshire Chocolates range and these will be unveiled throughout Chocolate Week.

To add a little more sparkle to Chocolate Week I will be offering 10% off all Christmas pre-orders, and any customers spending over £10 between the 8th and 14th of October will receive a small box of chocolate inspired macaroons handmade by Julia.

If you would like any more information about the events I am planning to celebrate Chocolate Week or you’d like to book a group talk/ presentation please contact Julia on 07814113156 or email julia@tootsweetschocolates.co.uk


Reasha’s Work Experience

Every so often we’re joined by someone on a work experience placement, we always ask them to write a blog about what they’ve been up to ……

Why do we do work experience?

To get a full idea of the working world and experience a work place environment: I think this week (all 4 days of it) I have definitely
achieved that goal.

My name’s Reasha and Toot Sweets is where I am doing my work experience.  To be quite honest with you, I hadn’t been in
the Shrewsbury Market Hall since I was… 7 but this week I’ve been honoured to work within its midst. I’ve always loved sweets and chocolate, I mean who doesn’t, so naturally it’s been a delight to be around them, package them with cute curled
ribbons and even make the ridiculously professional chocolates that are displayed in the counter.

I always believed sweets to be, just that, sweets: but when you really look into it you find that there are just so many traditions and
stories behind them. Everyone has one kind of sweet they were never allowed as a child or spent their pocket money on every day after school: to listen to the tales is just wonderful.

I’ve discovered so much about the delicious chocolates they sell in Toot Sweets. It’s just incredible how much we take chocolate for
granted; it’s got such a beautiful taste, aroma, ‘snap’. Working in Toot Sweets, even for this short amount of time, has really opened my eyes to the opportunities and wonders of the profession: it’s been a real once in a lifetime experience so
for that, Julia, thank you.

I don’t want to finish on a cliché but I think I’ll have to: if you’re ever around Shrewsbury and you fancy a more than sweet treat, pop in
to Toot Sweets. It really is a fantasy.


2 Gold Stars won at this year’s Great Taste Awards by the Guild of Fine Food

This Saturday I found out that I had won 2 Gold Stars at the Great Taste Awards run by the Guild of Fine Foods for my Shropshire Lavender Truffle in Dark Chocolate. Some of you may remember that last year I won 1 Gold Star for my Shropshire Lavender Truffle in White Chocolate. I also won 2 Gold Stars for my Dark Chocolate Butterscotch in 2010.

I’m really glad to see that a little bit of tweaking to my Lavender Truffle has meant I have won 2 Stars. To make the Lavender Truffles I use Lavender grown by Shropshire Lavender and locally sourced cream. The truffle has a very creamy consistency and is encased in delicious chocolate (It’s available in White, Milk and Dark).

Once I have the feedback from the judges I will post some of the details 🙂

If you don’t know much about the Great Taste Awards I’ve listed some interesting facts from their website below

  •  7482 products were entered this year by over 1500 companies.
  • All the tasting is blind and 350+ judges are used; they range from fine food retailers, chefs, restaurant critics, food writers and other industry experts.
  • Of the 7482 products entered 1686 of them were awarded 1 Star Gold, 608 products were awarded 2 Gold Stars and 114 food products received the special 3 Gold Star.

I’d just like to take the opportunity to thank all my lovely regulars and hopefully after reading this post some of you might take the opportunity to pop into my shop in the Shrewsbury Market Hall.

I can still send chocolates out my mail order as well, so please email ( julia@tootsweetschocolates.co.uk ) me if you’re interested


Sophie’s Work Experience

Every so often we’re joined by someone on a work experience placement, we always ask them to write a blog about what they’ve been up to ……

Hi, I’m Sophie and I go to the Wakeman School in Shrewsbury.
At the moment I’m working here at Toot Sweets in the Market Hall for my work
experience. So far it has been really enjoyable, and I’m sure I will enjoy this
week just as much. Ever since I was small I’ve had a passion for sweets, so as
you can imagine, working in a sweet shop has been absolutely amazing. I’ve been
doing all sorts of cool stuff while I’ve been here, like;

– Bagging up sweets
– Helping to refill sweet jars
– Making little signs for the sweets
– Helping set up displays
– Even chocolate tasting!

As you guys can see, I have been having lots of fun, but I’ve
also been learning tons of fascinating stuff too! I’ve learnt all about
customer service, and all about chocolate tasting. You know, chocolate tasting
isn’t just about taste; it’s about the smells, the appearance, and the
explosion of flavours when you bite into it. It’s almost indescribable.

I’ve done pretty much everything I came here to do, and it’s
been amazing! But there are a few things I would like to do before I go… like
learn how to do proper icing on cupcakes. I adore making cupcakes at home, but
I can never get the icing how I want it, so I would love Julia to show me how
she does the simply amazing icing on her cupcakes. I want mine to look almost
as beautiful as hers do.

So, that’s enough from me. But if you ever get a spare
moment, and you are craving something sweet, head down to Toot Sweets in the
Market Hall, because the things here are indescribably wonderful. 🙂


Loyalty Scheme

I’m currently trying to think of more ways to get people to regularly visit me at the Market Hall in Shrewsbury. Previously I have produced Loyalty
cards where people have got a free quarter of sweets after receiving 8 stamps. I’d like to do something universal to include the cupcakes and chocolates, but that might mean the loyalty card scheme might become complicated.

So I thought the best way to design a loyalty scheme for my customers it to ask my customers! I’m really interested in what your views and
opinions are what you’d think a good loyalty scheme would be. Please comment below or on the facebook wall 🙂


Shrewsbury Market Hall Revival

Last August we took over the ownership of the sweet shop in the Market Hall, we’ve finally got round to sprinkling the Toots magic on the unit after waiting for our floor to be resurfaced. We’ve now got one of our beautiful chocolate fridges positioned in the shop and customers can now walk straight into the shop. As a few of you will know the shop units in the market all have large static counters, we’ve removed ours making the shop feel much bigger and open. The shop looks so much better now people can walk into the shop and look at the sweets properly as well as being able to have more choice.

We’ve still got lots of improvements to make, but it’s a really exciting time all round. We’ll be stocking and providing all the fab
products and services available on our website as well as linking up with other shops in the market to provide some exciting services (announcements coming soon). We’ll have a dedicated Wedding Favour section, our handmade chocolates, truffles, chocolate bars, and lots of well known traditional sweeties, party bags, lolly pops and lots of special at weekends.

The Market has recently gone under a major revamp, with new shop owners in one particular corner turning the area into a vibrant Mecca for
crafts and vintage delights. My shop is situated just on the corner of the newly revamped area next to the Birds Nest Cafe, it offers a fabulous mix of whole foods serving Fair-trade tea and coffee, homemade soup and delicious freshly made sandwiches. I sampled a Hummus and Roasted Vegetable sandwich the other day. A great combination of flavours enhanced with some pesto and fresh bread. Arran and Victor have worked hard to transform the cafe area using fairy lights and really tree branches to decorate the walls and ceiling. All the furniture is recycled vintage pieces picked up along their travels.

Jo Bloodworth will also be opening a new shop at the end of June, which will be packed with fantastic gifts, retro glass ware and her own,
designed and made gifts such as dresses and aprons. Jo has a huge following in Shrewsbury because of her wonderful and creative one off pieces.

Dog-eared Vintage and Vintage Gem’s bring the retro sparkle into the crafty corner; both have a great selection of clothes and accessories,
and a must for any student or vintage fan looking for a statement piece with character.

Adding some glamour to our corner of the Market is SalakjitNail Art offering a range of services such as Manicures, Pedicures, and Gel
Nail Extensions on Saturdays.  Private Nail Parties for Adults and Children are also available

Ilovecompost.com has taken over the last unit in the corner, as a working artist Sam will be producing commissions from the shop while
helping to spread the arty message with classes for children. Recently she held a paint class where toddlers got the chance to paint cats and learn about how they moved; they finished the class with a story read by Susan from Pengwern books. A lovely interactive class with many more planned.

Lastly although not in the corner of the market Toot Sweets is based in, but something I really do believe is a gem and a must for any
foodie to visit; Mirage Mediterrean Mezze. Working within the food industry you really do get to experience lots of good and bad eateries. Mirage is one of the amazing ones; family run and bursting with so much potential. Situated at the back of the market in the opposite corner to Toot Sweets. Mirage sells a range of Mediterranean goods as well as serving freshly made food in its restaurant area, food is also available to take away. I often pop over for a wrap for my lunch; I can highly recommend the Halloumi wrap. A vibrant combination of salty warm Halloumi dressed with chunks of tomato, refreshing mint leaves and cooling cucumber; a vegetarian’s delight! With a range of mezze dishes (tapas style) you can sit down order a few dishes and while away the afternoon catching up with friends in the relaxed atmosphere. The Baklava is also exquisite; layers of puff pastry adorned with pistachio nuts and drenched in honey, baked and cut into cubes. I often find shop bought baklava is too sweet and usually baked to an inch of its life making the risk of breaking a tooth likely. Mirage’s baklava is definitely worth a try, moist, sweet and positively nutty!

The Market hall is bursting with a huge variety of different shops; fresh local veg, handmade cakes, delis, antiques, children’s clothing, a
fish bar…you name it and its here. If you’ve never been to the market I definitely recommend a visit the opening hours are:

Tuesday 9-4

Wednesday 9-4

Thursday 9-1

Friday 9-4

Saturday 9-4

The Market hall has recently joined facebook and will have a twitter account very soon. Please check out there facebook page, and if you’re
not already a member of the Toot Sweets Page please join.


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