I was lucky enough to be invited to a pre opening event at the new Thorntons Store which opens today (2nd November 2017) in the Intu shopping centre in Derby. Unlike other stores this has an amazing modern look and really is unique, if you love chocolate then read on to find out more of what I discovered there!
As you enter the store you are faced with this counter showing a selection of tasty chocolates which have been made in the store. This variety will be changed at times depending on what has been made so it wont get boring and there will always be something yummy for everyone. They have allergy information and can share with you that if you have any specific allergies however as with anything made in an environment with other items they of course can not guarantee there wont be traces of nuts for example.
I absolutely loved the chocolate baskets above and knowing they are made with love in store makes them so much nicer in my opinion. There are taps flowing warm chocolate which can be seen in the area where you can see the chocolates being made just next to this cabinet. The chocolate is flowing at the perfect temperature for them to give chocolates the glossy look they have and set quickly.
Watching chocolates being made definitely makes you hungry and seeing that they are made with such care but also in such a sterile and clean way is good. I can imagine this would be an area children would love to come and see chocolates being made before choosing something of their own, completely a child’s dream!
Alongside this Craftery there is what can be described best as a “normal Thorntons shop”. All those gifts and boxes of chocolates that Thorntons are best known for. The shop area is well set out with plenty of space and a light relaxed and modern feel. With boxes and boxes of so many different chocolates available it really does have something for everyone, unless they don’t like chocolate!
Of course the personalisation of items which Thorntons is so well known for is available in store and the selection of items to be personalised is huge. As you can see in the forefront of the above photo it is easy to see how an item will look when personalised too so you can really think about and create the perfect gift, or just treat yourself!
All items are personalised to order and with such care and attention. The photo above really shows the care that went into another ladies choice of a cat to be iced on a plaque. I chose to have a football themed plaque for Ben with his favourite team on the Stags (Mansfield Town Football Club!) who was thrilled by it when I showed him!
This new concept store doesn’t end here though, it has a large café too with a full menu of a large variety of foods including breakfasts and salads. Of course though they have amazing cakes and desserts too with handcrafter ice cream sundaes and milkshakes which really look and taste amazing and they are totally on a whole new level! Looking at the sundaes (pictured below) you would imagine them to be really expensive as they are handcrafted to order. At around £3-5 for milkshakes and sundaes they are very comparable to elsewhere but the quality is well above anything I have had before!
Not one to miss out I had to try the Hot Chocolates too which varies in price at around £3 but made from chocolate flakes, and with a variety of options they really are a step above elsewhere. Some places you can buy a hot chocolate, or a luxury hot chocolate with cream, at Thorntons all the hot chocolates are what I would consider luxury and with such a creamy and smooth chocolate taste they are not one to be missed that’s for sure!
With so many choices of hot chocolates it really would be rude to sit and enjoy a salad from their menu wouldn’t it! Well obviously you can there are plenty on there along with other items too, maybe so you feel less guilty for being indulgent afterwards? The café is so relaxed with such a comfortable selection of seating it really is somewhere that you could sit for an afternoon and enjoy a meal and then a luxurious pudding if you wanted.
Choosing a dessert from a menu is always so difficult isn’t it, so many choices and you feel maybe you should be good and just have a coffee (they have a good choice of those too!) but then there are some times when you really should treat yourself and a visit to Thorntons in Derby is one of those. Obviously being set in the middle of the Intu centre it is perfect to have a break from shopping and how could you not reward yourself with something yummy. Obviously I am not advocating eating like this all of the time but a treat every now and then is normal and of course it is one meal in 21 that week so why not thoroughly enjoy it!
With so much choice I got to try a little bit of a few different desserts! How amazing do they look? The lemon tart and the salted caramel praline torte were probably my favourite but to be honest it was hard as they were all so good! It is a good job the chairs were so comfortable as I could really have sat there all day enjoying their food and drinks! Thankfully for my waistline I tried a little bit of everything and then decided that I must definitely visit again and enjoy my favourite sundae again!
As you can see the café is set up well and comfortable with also some comfier sofa type chairs that are just off the edge of the photo! A lovely place to visit to buy a loved one a present that you have seen is made with love on site and then whilst you are there treating yourself to a luxurious cuppa and treat to take the weight off your feet whilst shopping. A perfect addition to the Intu centre in Derby I can imagine this will get very busy but don’t let that put you off it is totally worth it!
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