File photo by D.L. Anderson
Escazu's Hallot Parson with one of the chocolatier's antique roasting machines in Raleigh.
has made its signature bean-to-bar chocolates, meticulous truffles, and delightful push-pops on Blount Street since March 16, 2010. The chocolatier originally opened February 7, 2008, on Glenwood Avenue, but because that birthday falls in the middle of the Valentine’s Day craze, Escazu instead celebrates its reopening date.
For Escazu's eighth birth/reopening day, the chocolatier is going big. The company recently acquired another ice cream machine, more freezer space, and an oven. It’s the recipe for one very great thing: an ice cream sundae "bar," which the company will host from one to five p.m. on Saturday, March 26.
Ice cream flavors like chocolate, vanilla, and fruity pebbles, plus dairy-free chocolate and coconut banana, will be made in-house by Escazu. They’ll be piled high with eclectic toppings like orange-infused olive oil and chocolate-covered potato chips, or more traditional selections like warm chocolate sauce and gooey caramel.
It’s a smart, tasty move. Late March is when spring begins in earnest, bringing with it the kind of heat and humidity that only the finest ice creams can cure.
“We have an awesome team that inspires us to do more all the time,” says Danielle Centeno, head chocolatier at Escazu. “We all love ice cream and want to let everyone know this is something we do.”
In addition to the sundae bar, Escazu will also make a special chocolate cake filled with its favorite and best-selling confections, a free slice of which it's offering with every purchase. While the annual celebration is usually the only time Escazu has a sale, this year, the company has decided to donate 20 percent of its day-of sales to the Inter-Faith Food Shuttle
, a Raleigh-based organization battling food insecurity throughout seven counties in and around the Triangle.
Finally, since the celebration falls over Easter weekend, the staff has hidden cards throughout the neighborhoods of Mordecai and Oakwood—plus local businesses that carry or use its chocolate—as a kind of mega Easter egg hunt. Starting Monday, if you find one, you can redeem it in-store for a sweet prize.
“We are going a little bigger this year,” Centeno says. “I know it’s not ten yet, but we are on the way to ten, and it makes us feel happy and excited and grateful for all the support this city has given us through the years. We want to celebrate it and share it.”
Ice Cream Sundae Bar
Saturday, March 26
1–5 p.m. or while supplies last
Regular: 2 scoops, 2 toppings $6.50
Large: 3 scoops, 3 toppings $8.50
Additional scoops: $2.00 ea
Additional toppings: $0.75 ea
Vanilla whipped cream included
Full list of toppings:
Homemade Mini Marshmallows
Orange-Infused Olive Oil
Chocolate-Covered Potato Chips
Chocolate-Covered Fruity Pebble Bits
Morello Cherries in Syrup
Peanut Butter Chocolate Bits
Maldon Sea Salt