Taste Buds: Dillsboro Chocolate Factory

Located in the heart of Dillsboro, the Dillsboro Chocolate Factory is sure to have something to tickle your sweet tooth.

Started in 1999, the factory was originally located across the street from its current location, which it moved to in 2004. After two previous owners, Tonya and Bob Williams and Tammy Sessoms currently own the chocolate factory and have for seven years. The shop has been family-owned and operated since it opened in 1999.

“We were looking for something to do in self-employment,” said Tonya Williams.

The home-converted chocolate factory is a lovely place to spend a day. When one walks in, they are greeted by a collection of touristy items to the left and a cozy living room to the right. Located in the back of the house, past jars of coffee, shelves of colorful Jelly Beans and a wall of Beef Jerky is the open kitchen, which hosts countless number of sweets.

All the fudge and chocolate is handmade on location from single bean Venezuela chocolate. Mixed with Calico Fudge’s raw chocolate and vanilla fudge base with some flavoring, you experience Dillsboro Chocolate Factory’s amazing flavors.

Their flavors of fudge include Chocolate, Chocolate Mint Swirl Fudge, Cookies n’ Cream Fudge, Peanut Butter and many more.

We tried the Caramel Apple Pie fudge, which tasted like freshly baked apple pie with a dash of cinnamon and caramel. Created with real apple pieces, apple cider and vanilla fudge, this fudge is perfect for the season.

The Sea Salt Caramel fudge, chocolate fudge with a layer of caramel topped with sea salt, was another favorite for this reporter. The chocolate melted in your mouth and left a base of caramel to enjoy.

Fudge is priced at $7.99 for half a pound. Dillsboro Chocolate Factory also offers seasonal fudges.

“We have too many flavors to put out all the time,” said Tonya Williams.

If fudge isn’t your favorite, the chocolate factory offers many other alternatives.

Their truffles are priced at $1.69 per piece, and we were treated to their Chai Truffle, which is crafted with chai black tea mixed with cinnamon and cloves. Biting into this truffle is an explosion of flavors. After the rich chocolaty shell one is greeted with a soft center. This reporter was a little overwhelmed but after some time the flavors mixed together into a delectable taste of chai.

Other flavors include, but are not limited to, Black Rock Truffle, a crunchy dark chocolate; Lime Truffle, lime-infused chocolate; and Tail of the Dragon Truffle, which is infused with dried jalapeno peppers for a bit of a kick.

An interesting item that the factory offers is their chocolate shooters for $2.15 per piece. Mixed with alcohol and served in small chocolate cups, the shooters are actually quite an amazing experience. Each shooter contains less than 3 percent alcohol by volume so everyone can enjoy them.

Their seasonal Pumpkin Shooter left this reporter speechless. Made with Harvest Pumpkin Pie Cream Liquor, the shooter tasted exactly like a fresh out-of-the-oven pumpkin pie. The chocolate cup held together the soft creamy center and created a wonderful experience.

One may also try their Apple Martini Shooter, Fire Jack Shooter, Banana Split Shooter and others.

Even if none of the above sounds appealing Dillsboro Chocolate Factory offers many different varieties of chocolates from Dark Sea Salt Caramels to White Oreos. Even their milk chocolate is an amazingly rich chocolate that made this reporter never want another Hershey’s bar again. One can get a half-pound of chocolate for $11.

One of the chocolate items this reporter got to try was their Vanilla Bean Espresso Bark, made from ground up espresso bean from Panacea Roastery in Waynesville. This bark was quite literally a punch to the face with espresso that left this reporter feeling wide-awake.

The shop also offers over 30 types of Beef Jerky. Some of the flavors offered include beef, fish, wild boar, alligator and kangaroo. The factory also includes jerky that is made the South African way.

“A lot of locals drive to Tennessee to get jerky, so we wanted to make it easier for them,” said Tonya Williams.

The shop also just opened its doors in a new location in Pigeon Forge, Tenn.

“We’re getting our feet wet with expanding,” Tonya Williams said with a laugh. “It’s a little different but offers a majority of the standards we have here.”

The shop also offers wholesale inquiries and has items for sale at locations like the Chocolate Bear in Waynesville as well as little candy stores.

Located at 28 Church Street, Dillsboro, the Dillsboro Chocolate Factory is a very homey and wonderful place for all your favorite sweets. For more information, call 828-631-0156 or check out their website dillsborochocolate.com.