Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Edelweiss Chocolates

Remember that episode of I Love Lucy where Lucy and Ethel get a job in a chocolate factory? Of course you do! Along with the grape-stomping scene, it is one of the classics of physical humor. The conveyor belt in the Edelweiss Chocolate Factory, located right in the center of downtown Beverly Hills, was the inspiration for that scene.

Edelweiss has a huge selection of chocolate-dipped fruit, including some unusual selections like mango and pineapple. The arancini orange peel bark is an acquired taste, but once it is acquired, it stays, and nothing else will satisfy that craving. But the one treat that draws me back is the chocolate-dipped cherries, which you can order with or without brandy. Another huge draw is the fresh marshmallows. My favorite are the milk chocolate-dipped marshmallows with caramel.

They cater to diabetics with some delicious sugar-free selections, particularly the English toffee, whose buttery richness makes sugar unneccesary.

Another popular feature is Edelweiss' novelty chocolates, shaped like various pieces of sports equipment, toys, and what-have-you. They can be on the pricy side; I would rather get the equivalent weight in marshmallows than give someone a giant chocolate golf ball.

If the I Love Lucy connection is not enough of a Hollywood pedigree for you, Edelwiss was a favorite of Katherine Hepburn and Frank Sinatra. Previous owners include Marty Engels and Shirley Jones.

Current owner Madlen Zahir is happy to give a tour of the little factory in back to anyone who asks. On the afternoon I finally got up the nerve to ask for a tour, she encouraged me to return in the morning to watch the conveyor belt in action.

Make mine chocolate-covered cherries. With brandy.

Edelweiss Chocolates
444 N. Canon Dr,
Beverly Hills, CA

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