Cocoa Creek Chocolates to Bring Sweet Inventory to New Camp Hill Boutique
Diane Krulac diversifies with a new sweet adventure.
Founder of Brittle Bark in Mechanicsburg opens Cocoa Creek Chocolates September 12 at 18 S. 18th St. at Camp Hill. The shop will present the latest line of truffles, bars and caramels from Krulac.
“We really hope and expect people to say, ‘Wow, I’ve never seen anything like this in central Pennsylvania,’ she said.
Krulac manufactures the chocolates in micro-batches and focuses on “selected collections, clean ingredients and an elegant and playful visual appeal”.
A grand opening ceremony will take place at the store over several days starting at 12:30 p.m. on September 14 with an opening ceremony and a taste of shopping. The store will also be open on September 12 for Camp Hill’s Harvest Hop.
Krulac ventured into the candy business by accident after making peanuts brittle for a preschool bake sale. She invested $ 2,000 in the business (and more along the way) by first selling wholesale from home to local stores.
Her big break came when TV host Rachael Ray made Poppin ‘Time, a mix of popcorn, pretzels, peanut brittle bark, and chocolate, the show’s snack of the day. Suddenly, locals came knocking – literally – on the kitchen door of Brittle Bark in Mechanicsburg.
She opened the retail store in Mechanicsburg, where customers still buy fudge, chocolate-coated pretzels, wrapped candy, and the signature brittle bark.
Ten years ago, she sold Brittle Bark’s wholesale operations to Fry Communications. Left with time and the desire to switch from bark to chocolate, she developed her latest activity, Cocoa Creek. It is designed to showcase flavors from around the world.
“Like grapes, cocoa beans take on flavor and character from their source, and the cocoa that is made from these beans also has a distinctive taste of the region where it was roasted, blended and produced,” said Krulac said.
She sources her chocolate from about 18 different countries, some from small artisan bar bean companies that have relationships with plantation owners in the Dominican Republic, Haiti and other countries.
Some of Cocoa Creek’s star sweets include truffles such as black pepper balsamic strawberry, coconut cream pie, passion fruit, raspberry, and limoncello basil. Customers can choose from personalized boxes or pre-made collections like a four-piece Black Beauty with 70% dark chocolate truffles from France, Italy, Belgium and the United States.
Cocoa Creek will also feature monthly limited edition truffle collections, as an upcoming Halloween theme in October.
The line extends to Luther’s Trek Bars, named after Krulac’s Jack Russell Terrier in flavors like Ginger-Apricot, Lemon-Wild Blueberry and Ultra Violet with dried raspberries, pistachios and sweet violets. Caramels come in both savory and spirited varieties such as Almond Sea Salt, Hazelnut Caramel Coffee, Bourbon, and Spiced Rum.
For Krulac, Cocoa Creek keeps him from being bored.
“I don’t have big retirement plans, but I love what I do. It has legs. He will have a life. It’s something fun, ”she said.
Coca Creek chocolates are available online. The store’s opening hours for the opening week are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday (September 15), Wednesday (September 16) and Friday (September 18), 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday ( September 17) and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday (September 19).