SUPER update (12/1/16): I have a discount code for you!
Looking for a great gift idea? Salem, Mass.-based @HarborSweets suggests: artisan chocolate that saves the bees!
Solo or bundled in a gift set, visit harborsweets.com and use code GATHER4FUN through 12/14 to save 10% off your shipping.
Pro tip: check out the Gather Tea Set – a great gift idea for the tea lover and gardener on your list, or for an anytime gift.
I like good dark chocolate. I like bees. I like good causes. I like pretty boxes and nice packaging. I am a fan of pollination and small businesses and local companies and good food.
I’m sure you’ve heard about the honeybee declines in recent years. The USDA reported that pesticides and parasites caused a 44% loss of honeybee colonization in just one year. The White House has a Pollinator Health Task Force to study and address the problem.
Harbor Sweets, an artisanal chocolate maker in Salem, MA (and long recognized as one of the top women-owned businesses in Massachusetts), has a new line of chocolates called Gather. And yes, I was lucky enough to be asked to review a box.
Gather is a new small-batch line of chocolates Harbor Sweets. Contained in a honey-yellow honeycomb-shaped box is a flight of six filled chocolates and truffles, each coated in excellent dark chocolate. Inside each chocolate is a filling with a subtle note of local honey. The flavors include:
- Caramelized Honey Truffle
- Pomegranate Molasses
- Sesame Crunch
- Cashew Caramel
- Coconut Cluster
- Sour Cherry
Inside the lid is a little map to indicate which is which (unless your brother eagerly opens the box and everything gets mixed up and you’re not sure which is which, but it doesn’t matter — they are all good! And, ok, maybe I was yelling, “No, wait, I’m a blogger!! That’s not how we open things to review them! Put the lid back on and let’s start over!”).
And, they’re pretty. The Sour Cherry has a flower on it. Caramelized Honey Truffle has a bee. There’s a beehive on Pomegranate Molasses.
Gather was inspired by the plight of the honeybees. A portion of sales (2.5%) will be donated to the Pollinator Partnership, a 5013c NGO that educates about and advocates for best practices for honeybee protection.
Here’s a nice little video on the backstory (plus, you can see how chocolates are made!):
So: Good cause, good chocolate, good company. You can order Gather from Harbor Sweets ($12.50 for a six-piece box, $18.50 for a 12-piece box) or use their store locator to find out what retailers sell the chocolate. Plus, they ship coast to coast. These chocolates make an excellent hostess or thank-you gift.
THE GIVEAWAY BELOW HAS ENDED.
But wait! One lucky person will win a six-piece box of Gather Chocolates from me! I have to ship it to you, so the winner needs to be within the contiguous 48 United States.
To win, leave a comment telling me what’s most appealing about these to you: the cause, the chocolates themselves, or the company itself. (Please make sure your comment is connected to or contains your email address so I can email you if you win! — and if you follow me on Facebook, I will give a little shout-out there to the winner, in case you don’t get the email).
You can leave an extra comment (another chance to win!) telling me if you’re going to eat these yourself, share them with a friend/loved one, or give them as a gift.
A winner will be randomly drawn Wednesday, September 21, 2016, at 8 p.m. EST and notified by email (see above, re: Facebook). Winner will have 24 hours to respond or else I’ll pick another winner.
UPDATE: We have a winner! Congratulations, Michelle G.! Thanks, everyone, for entering. Go try these chocolates!