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Matcha Green Tea Squares

Locals Guide: January 2017

Matcha Green Tea Squares

Branson’s Chocolates is beginning 2017 with introducing Matcha Green Tea Squares. Matcha powder is mixed into a white chocolate ganache, formed into squares, and then topped with a sprinkle of matcha powder. According to many studies, matcha tea makes this a sweet treat loaded with benefits: L-Theanine, an amino acid known to create calmness and improve memory, powerful antioxidants including polyphenols and EGCg which is believed to be a powerful anti-carcinogen and catechins which help lower LDL cholesterol, to name a few. Thanks to http://www.naturallivingideas.com/10-amazing-benefits-of-matcha-green-tea/ .

If you want to find us on the web, we are at—

If you want to catch us out and about in January, here’s where we will be—

  • January 20th & 21st, Friday 4-9pm & Saturday 11am-6pm, we will be at ChocolateFest at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland. It is the ‘Northwest’s Premier Chocolate Festival’ with over 70 vendors of chocolates, treats, and libations. We’ve been going to ChocolateFest for seven years, and it’s an amazing experience for chocolate lovers. In fact, our Rich Chocolate Truffle won the People’s Choice Award for Best Truffle at ChocolateFest. For more details go to chocolatefest.org .

We’re often out and about at many of the local wineries and events. For the latest event updates, please check us out at https://www.facebook.com/bransonschocolates . If you’d like to see us at one of your favorite local events, you can contact us on our Facebook page or email us at info@bransonschocolates.com . We’d love to hear from you!

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Truffles

Our Confections Series: Truffles

If you have ever wondered what exactly a Truffle is, or what different flavors of chocolate bars we sell this will provide all of the answers to your questions. Over the next couple of months I will be writing separate blog posts on the different types of confections we offer including Truffles, Cremes, Chocolate Bars, etc.

Today we will be talking about one of our favorites; Truffles!

So what exactly is a truffle? A truffle has a ganache, (a combination of a chocolate butter cream and flavoring) based center. All of our truffles are gluten free except our specialty beer truffles. Our truffles are made by creating the center and dipping them twice in chocolate as opposed to being dipped only once or being processed in a mold. All of our truffles are handmade with no chemical preservatives used. Click here to read more about dietary concerns pertaining to each individual truffle. If you enjoy our truffles and are looking to expand your repertoire, we recommend the Wasabi and Jasmine which are also ganache based confections.

Each individual truffle can be purchased for $2.50 and we offer a discounted price on our six piece box. Many of our truffles along with many of our other products can be purchased here on our website or in our retail location at 1662 Siskiyou Blvd in Ashland, OR.

We have eleven regular flavors of truffles and six specialty flavors. Specialty flavors include our “Beer Truffles” made from locally produced beer.

Amaretto

Our Amaretto Truffle is made with Deseranno mixed into the ganache because of the more natural almond flavor as opposed to almond extract.The truffle is topped with chopped almonds.

 

Blackberry

Our Blackberry Truffle is made with Brandy Peaks Blackberry Liqueur (Brookings, OR) mixed in with the ganache. The truffle is topped with a purple colored white chocolate.

 

Crème de Menthe

Our Creme de Menthe truffle is made with Creme de Menthe and topped with a green colored white chocolate.

 

 

Espresso

Our Espresso Truffle is made with espresso grounds from Rogue Valley Roasting company. The truffle is topped with more espresso grounds.

 

 

Orange

Our Orange Truffle is made with Crescendo Arancello Organic Orange Liqueer (Eugene, OR). The truffle is topped with an orange colored white chocolate.

 

 

Hazelnut

Our Hazelnut Truffle uses Frangelico and is topped with a roasted hazelnut grown in the state of Oregon.

 

 

Pomegranate

Our Pomegranate Truffle is made with Pama, a pomegranate liqueur, and topped with a pink sugar pearl.

 

 

Raspberry Chambord

Our Raspberry Chambord Truffle uses Raspberry Chambord, a black raspberry liqueur from France. The truffle is topped with pink white chocolate.

 

 

Rich Chocolate (2010 Chocolate Fest Peoples Choice Award)

Our Rich Chocolate Truffle is dark chocolate finished with more dark chocolate

 

 

 

Tequilla

Our Tequila truffle uses Patron Silver topped with a mix of lime flavored green white chocolate and Fleur de Sel sea salt.

 

Rum

Our Rum Truffle uses 4 Spirits Silver Rum and is topped with white chocolate.

Beer Truffles

Our specialty beer truffles were created when my husband encouraged me to do something different and challenged me to create a “six pack of beer”.  We have six different flavors of beer truffles:

Mogli Truffle

 

Our Mogli Truffle is produced with Caldera Brewery Mogli and dusted with cocoa powder.

 

 

 

Tunguska

 

Our Tunguska Truffle is produced with a cream style ale by Opposition Brewery.

 

 

 

 

Bloody Hippie

 

 

Our Bloody Hippie Truffle is made with a blood orange wheat brew and topped with red chocolate.

 

 

 

Milk & Honey

 

Our Milk & Honey truffle is produced with Standing Stone Milk and Honey and topped with white chocolate.

 

 

 

 

Toasted Coconut

 

Our Toasted Coconut Truffle is Produced with Standing Stone Brewery’s Toasted Coconut and topped with flakes of toasted coconut.

 

 

 

 

Siskiyou Pass

 

Our Siskiyou Pass Truffle is made with Bricktowne Brewery Siskiyou pass and topped with dark chocolate.

 

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Dietary Concerns

Dietary Concerns

This holiday season when you are choosing one of our confections you may be shopping with specific dietary concerns in mind. Here at Branson’s Chocolates we cater to many different needs including Gluten-free, Dairy-free, and Sugar-free. All of our chocolate is GMO-free because we use a delicious European Chocolate.

Local or Direct from Producer

  • Direct from the Producer Hazelnuts, Macadamia Nuts, Mint Oils
  • Local Produce, Beer, Orange and Blackberry Liqueur, Rum, Preserves and Cream

 Gluten-Free

  • Most of our confections are gluten-free
  • Beer Truffles are the only items that contain gluten

 Dairy-Free

  • All of our dark chocolates are dairy-free because there are no milk fats added

 Sugar-Free

  • Milk chocolate bars with or without almonds
  • Dark chocolate bars with or without almonds
  • Milk and dark chocolate hazelnut clusters
  • Milk and dark chocolate peanut clusters
  • Sugar-free items are sweetened with Maltitol a sugar alcohol

 

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All Things Peppermint & Eggnog

Locals Guide: December 2016

All Things Peppermint & Eggnog

December is the perfect month for peppermint and eggnog, and at Branson’s Chocolates that means Peppermint Bark, Peppermint Bars, and Eggnog Truffles. Our delicious Peppermint Bark is a layer of rich dark chocolate topped with a layer of white chocolate, crushed peppermint candy and a touch of locally sourced peppermint oil. Our scrumptious Peppermint Bars are white chocolate mixed with peppermint candies and a touch of locally sourced peppermint oil. And our smooth and creamy Eggnog Truffles have an eggnog ganache center made with local eggnog, which is dipped in white chocolate, and topped with a sprinkle of nutmeg. Naughty or nice, you deserve some chocolate, so come in and pick up some for yourself.

We’re often out and about at many of the local wineries and events. For the latest event updates, please check us out at https://www.facebook.com/bransonschocolates . If you’d like to see us at one of your favorite local events, you can contact us on our Facebook page or email us at info@bransonschocolates.com . We’d love to hear from you!

The holiday season is fast approaching, so now is the perfect time to come in and order chocolate for the holidays. Take the craziness out of the holiday season with our custom gift boxes complete with pretty bows. Stop on in and our friendly staff will help you put together the perfect gift of fudge, assorted chocolates, truffles, bars, and turtle

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Paddington Station Annual Open House

Paddington Station’s Holiday Open House

For the past 43-years Paddington Station has hosted their Family of Stores Open House event. This event is a really exciting way to kick off the holiday season! They offer grand prize drawings, music and entertainment, hourly door prizes and all proceeds benefit the Ashland Emergency Food Bank.

Paddington Station is one of the many Southern Oregon locations that you can purchase Branson’s Chocolates. I have participated in their open house for the past seven years handing out samples of the product that they carry. This year I had samples of Peppermint Squares and Peppermint Candy Bars. Among these items Paddington Station also carries our Chocolate Bars, Toffee, Salted Caramels, and Hazelnut Clusters.

There are many local places that you can pick up a piece of Branson’s Chocolates. Visit our website for a full list of places you can purchase our chocolate this holiday season!

Handing out samples at the Paddington Station Open House

 

Peppermint Squares and Peppermint Bars Sample Station

 

A great turnout for the 43rd annual Paddington Station Open House!

 

Ashland High School Choir

 

 

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Ashland Culinary Festival

Chocolate Bar Class

Ashland Culinary Festival

Branson’s Chocolates has been participating in the Ashland Culinary Festival for the past seven years. It is an exciting opportunity to be able to showcase our hard work for the year and connect with the local community. Every year we host a booth where you can taste some of our favorite confections. This year we promoted our gourmet line of Wasabi Ginger Squares, Seasalt Caramels, and Jasmine Tea Squares.

Aside from our booth at the festival, we also hosted a workshop at our retail location (1662 Siskiyou Blvd, Ashland OR.) where participants had the ability to make their own chocolate bars! We included some pictures from this exciting experience!

Some of our participants learning about how to make chocolate bars!

 

Focusing on getting the right amount of chocolate into the chocolate bar molds! Yum!

 

Putting ingredients into the molds!

 

Teaching one of our participants how to use the vibrating machine to shake down ingredients into the chocolate bars!

 

After the chocolate bars were complete I held a question and answer session for our participants.

Thank you to everyone who participated in this years Ashland Culinary Festival! If you missed this event I will be at the Paddington Station Open House located at 125 East Main St in Ashland on November 19th handing out free samples! More details about the event can be found here.

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Welcome!

1422636_10153158804044713_4995745475182151099_nIn 2005 Ashland Fudge closed its doors and I purchased equipment and recipes to use in what is now my ever-growing business, Branson’s Chocolates. In the past eleven years I have doubled the business three times and what began as a family run operation quickly grew to numerous hours a week from myself, 2 full time and 1 part time employees. Because we are growing at such a steady pace it can be difficult to learn to take a step back and let someone else help me out. I enjoy being hands on in all aspects of my business from packaging to fixing a broken piece of equipment.

So what set’s us apart? I get asked this question frequently as any business owner does. Our handmade, hand-packaged chocolates use many local and natural products sourced directly from the farmer. For example this months item of the month (Almond Butter Cups) used MaraNatha Almond Butter, a brand that was founded and is currently produced in Ashland.

We hope to see you in our retail store at 1662 Siskiyou Blvd in Ashland, Oregon to try our item of the month Almond Butter Cups, or one of our other specialty confections!

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Almond Butter Cups

Local’s Guide: October 2016

Almond Butter Cups

For all those that love a great peanut butter cup—crunchy, delicious, and oh so chocolaty—have we got an upgrade for you! October’s Product of the Month at Branson’s Chocolates is Almond Butter Cups, featuring MaraNatha Organic Crunchy & Roasted Almond Butter and Branson’s Semi-Sweet (58%) Chocolate. MaraNatha says their Organic Almond Butter is “bursting with rich almond flavor and loaded with delicious roasted organic almond pieces for a satisfying crunch — this is the premier choice for the true almond lover.” We agree, and we know you will too, so come on in and see for yourself.

“Once considered a simple party snack, today almonds are recognized as a nutritional powerhouse. They represent one of the richest natural protein sources of any nut. Almonds have no cholesterol. They also contain monounsaturated fats, which have been identified as beneficial for helping to reduce one of the multiple risk factors associated with heart disease.
Recognizing these benefits, the FDA has approved a qualified health claim regarding almonds: ‘Scientific evidence suggests, but does not prove, that eating 1.5 ounces per day of most nuts, such as almonds, as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol, may reduce the risk of heart disease.’
Almonds are a good source of fiber, and they contain many other key nutrients. Scientific studies have linked regular almond and almond butter consumption to success in helping to manage weight and helping to control normal blood sugar levels as a part of a healthy diet. Preliminary research suggests that almonds have prebiotic properties that can help to maintain a healthy GI tract.” http://www.maranathafoods.com/health-facts/almonds

If you want to find us on the web, we’re at—

We won’t be out and about in October, so come see us in our store at 1662 Siskiyou Boulevard here in Ashland. We’re just two blocks south of Omar’s, in the Minute Market shopping center. We’re open Monday-Friday 10-6, and Saturday 11-5.

If you’d like to see us at one of your favorite local events, you can contact us on our Facebook page or email us at info@bransonschocolates.com . We’d love to hear from you!

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Fruit Filled Chocolate Bars

Local’s Guide: September 2016

Fruit Filled Chocolate Bars

Just in time for autumn harvest, Branson’s Chocolates is introducing chocolate bars with fruit centers in three delicious autumn flavors—Strawberry Milk Chocolate bar, Blackberry Semi-Sweet Chocolate bar, and Peach Semi-Sweet bar, all made with local fruit. The peaches are from Beebe Farms, which is located right here in Central Point, and the strawberries and blackberries are from Columbia Empire Farms, just south of Portland. Beebe Farms has been offering locally grown farm fresh produce since 1889, including tree ripened peaches, fresh picked corn, tomatoes, melons, cucumbers, berries, apples, and more. You can check them out at https://www.facebook.com/beebefarms/ . Columbia Empire Farms has been harvesting the finest berries and hazelnuts fresh from the farm since 1976. Check out their website at https://www.columbiaempirefarms.com/ .

 

If you want to find us on the web, we’re at—

If you want to catch us out and about in September, here’s where we will be—

  • September 16th -18th, Friday thru Sunday, we’ll be “Celebrating Abundance” at the 2016 Harvest Festival—a celebration of the beauty and bounty of Southern Oregon and Northern California. We’ll be there Friday 5-10pm, Saturday 12-8pm, and Sunday 12-5pm. For more information, check it out at http://www.attheexpo.com/sectionindex.asp?SectionID=3 . This year the Harvest Festival features Southern Oregon Brewfest, Battle of the Bones BBQ Cookoff, and Wildlife Images’ Wildlife Olympics, along with local livestock on display, outstanding arts, crafts, and photography, and other exhibits that celebrate the regional harvest and the abundance of fall. The Harvest Festival features food, drink, music, and lots of old-fashioned fun for the whole family. And of course, our incredibly delicious chocolate! See you there!

And be sure to come see us in our store at 1662 Siskiyou Boulevard here in Ashland. We’re just a block south of 7-11, in the Minute Market shopping center. We’re open Monday-Friday 10-6, and Saturday 11-5.

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Krunch Bar

Local’s Guide: August 2016

Krunch Bar

Summer—it’s the season for relaxing, for taking it easy, and for keeping it simple. So Branson’s Chocolates has brought back the classically simple, deliciously crispy Krunch Bar. Imagine, if you will, creamy smooth milk chocolate swirled together with crunchy crispy rice cereal, poured by hand into bars—it’s the perfect combination of crunchy, creamy, melt-in-your-mouth goodness.

Be sure to catch our August Chocolate Talk video on our YouTube channel https://www.youtube.com/c/BransonsChocolatesAshland . Brian Goodwin directs and shoots our videos each month, and they always feature our Item of the Month—for August it’s the Milk Chocolate Krunch Bar. Check us out every month to watch me making our latest product and talking about chocolate. You can also catch us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/bransonschocolates , where you’ll find out all about our latest events and happenings, and if you follow us on Instagram at https://instagram.com/bransonschocolates/ or @bransonschocolates, you know that’s where we post mouth-watering photos of our delicious chocolates.

We won’t be out and about in August, so come see us in the store at 1662 Siskiyou Boulevard here in Ashland. We’re just a block south of 7-11, in the Minute Market shopping center. We’re open Monday-Friday 10-6, and Saturday 11-5. Come in and get a Krunch Bar or two for yourself. Happy Summer!