By Danielle Profita
Straight from the rolling hills of Ecuador, Condor Chocolates has taken Athens by storm. This local gem is a beautiful, quaint stop for a quick bite of chocolate goodness and a gorgeous cup of coffee. Walking into the shop is akin to a sensational chocolate overload. It smells heavenly, and everything looks amazing. Condor Chocolates is the product of Nick and Peter Dale’s South American roots, an adventurous love story and the dream to bring a taste of Ecuador to Athens, their birthplace.
This story begins on a bus in Ecuador. Their dad met their mom while he was backpacking; she was a local in the town. It was love at first sight. On their honeymoon, the newlyweds packed up and decided to move to Athens. As kids, Nick and Peter treasured their summers in Ecuador with family. They loved the beach, the food and – not surprisingly – the chocolate.
“Condor Chocolates is our homage to the birthplace of our mother, a testament to the sense of adventure that brought our Dad to her and a celebration of Ecuador, home of the finest cacao in the world,” Nick says.
Located in the historic Five Points neighborhood of Athens, Condor Chocolates produces and sells bean-to-bar chocolate and a variety of other confections. Currently, in-house, Condor Chocolates produce 9-12 types of truffles each day, brownies, macaroons, English toffee, biscotti and gelato. To wash it all down, there is a full espresso bar, cappuccinos, Americanos, iced mochas, hot chocolate and sipping chocolate. However, if you're not in the mood for chocolate or coffee, they also have a variety of delicious spindrift sodas. The shop is both a chocolate factory and a café, so feel free to stop in for a smell, a taste or a view of fresh chocolate crafting every day!
In a few weeks Condor Chocolates will be expanding their business by opening up their first factory on Chase Street in Athens. The factory will facilitate in assisting with in-house production. The factory has been in the works since the fall of 2015. Construction will be finished by the beginning of May and production should start soon after. With this increase in production, Condor Chocolates primarily plans to expand across the Southeast region. Eventually, Nick and Peter of Condor Chocolates hope to share their story across the United States. Their dream is to distribute their bean-to-bar chocolates to people across the world and continue to pay homage to their South American roots with mouth-watering chocolates.
Chai Chocolate Truffle: “This truffle was chai-riffic,” says Alex Briner, a senior management major from Calhoun.
Sipping Chocolate: Dark, deep and luxuriously rich. Condor’s sipping chocolate is served warm in an espresso-sized cup. This thick and creamy serving of sipping chocolate is enough to warm your heart and your stomach. So tasty!
Iced Mocha: Cold, refreshing, chocolaty and full of coffee straight from Ecuadorian beans, Condor’s iced mocha is delicious. “I couldn’t finish it in one sitting because it was so rich,” says Lindsey Broscher, a junior public relations major from Suwanee.
Spindrift Sparkling Soda: “This ginger beer soda is amazing – it’s ginger just like me. It’s sugary, but not too sweet,” says Christine Rueger, a junior communications sciences and disorders major from Sarasota, Florida.
Go and check it out!
Address: Condor Chocolates
1658 S Lumpkin St
Athens, GA 30606
Hours: Monday: Closed for chocolate production
Tuesday – Saturday: 10:00 am – 9:00 pm
Sunday: 12:00 pm – 7:00 pm