Valentine’s Day Bites

Treat your Valentine to a little fire on the tongue—with spicy chocolates made in Leesburg.

Local chocolate with a kick.

Courtesy of MC2 Confections

Chocolatier Meredith Cohrs knew what she was looking for when developing her spicy chocolates—something pleasantly sweet, followed by lingering heat. “I wanted the spice to grow and build and then really knock your socks off,” says Cohrs, a Naval Academy graduate, former government contractor and now full-time owner of MC2 Confections. “I like bold flavors.”

Four trials of choking on spices and then not packing enough punch, eventually led to the successful Aztec Heat spice blend, a combination of cayenne pepper, cinnamon and ancho chilies infused into Belgian chocolate discs. The chocolate bites earn “a silky feel,” says Chors, “followed by a kick.”
Another Valentine’s Day sweet was inspired by a chocolate bar with pop rocks and strawberries she tasted at the restaurant and chocolate boutique, CoCo. Sala in Washington, D.C.

A fan of Red Hots, Cohrs “loved the way that those bright red dots made my mouth scream of fire but make me want more immediately.”
Cohrs mashes Red Hots and blends them into white chocolate discs. “I thought it could be really fun to incorporate the ‘old school’ candies we all had as kids into an artisan chocolate,” says Cohrs.

—Melissa J. Lyden