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"The children were nestled all snug in their beds,

While visions of sugar plums danced in their heads."

In the 1820s when Clement Moore wrote his classic Christmas poem, “’The Night Before Christmas,” kids would have loved to find sugar plums, apples or other fruit in their stockings.

Today’s children wouldn’t be quite so pleased with such gifts. But they surely would love a fudge pop from Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory in Delafield or maybe a chocolate dipped crispy Christmas tree from Allo Chocolat in Waukesha or a decorated chocolate Santa from Sweet Dreams Candies and Gifts in Oconomowoc.

The chocolatiers are girding their shops for the onslaught of treat seekers. Colorful shelves, trays and packages fill the stores with delightful creations, rivalling sugar plums or any other goodies from the past.

At Rocky Mountain, owners Mary and Harry Schaff of Pewaukee have holiday-themed confections throughout the store.

Harry, an IT guy for 30 years before opening his Rocky Mountain franchise seven years ago, said his shop is one of the few places you’ll find caramel apples year-round, including the ones in his shop decorated like snowmen, reindeer and the like for Christmas at $9.95.

The Schaffs came up with the idea for the fudge pops, decadent chocolate covered fudgy treats on a stick in a variety of flavors such as peanut butter fudge and sea salt caramel at $2.95 each.

“Mary is the creative one,” said Harry of the chocolates’ artistic looks.

But that is just the tip of the icicle. Harry said kids love their chocolate dipped treats like Oreos and pretzels, plus the ever popular “gummies.” The peppermint Oreos – in dark, milk or white chocolate – are $3.95 for a pack of three.

Allo Chocolat also has plenty of candy delights for kids, and grownups. Owner Carrie Igielski said kids love their dipped treats, such as the crispy Christmas trees for $1.99 each. Igielski also has some cute dipped Nutter Butter Santas on hand that sell at $3.95 for a package of two.

At Sweet Dreams, owner Ben Korpal has lots of nostalgia candy of which kids have never grown tired. Kids love to see jaw breakers, or candy or bubble gum cigarettes, in their stockings. His holiday gummies are also a favorite. They come in shapes of trees and other festive looks at $7.99 a pound.

Korpal said he doesn’t know of anyone else around who carries chocolate potpourri, which features sweetly scented peppermint chocolate covered in red and green. A bag is $9.99.

“It smells up a room pretty good,” said Korpal.

His fairy food is also a popular item during the holidays.

But it’s not just Christmas people are buying for.

The surrounding area also celebrates St. Nicholas Day, according to Igielski.

St. Nicholas Day, which is Dec. 6, is not celebrated in all parts of the country. Children leave their stockings out on Dec. 5 to find them filled with treats when they wake up the next morning.

There are bags and bags of holiday treats at Allo Chocolat, including colorful chocolates in shapes of presents, Santas, balls and bells wrapped in foil that are $8.99 for eight ounces. An eight-ounce bag of gummy Christmas trees is $2.75.

But kids aren’t the only ones who like goodies. There are plenty of ways to fill grown-ups’ stockings, as well.

For those looking for homemade fudge, there’s no need to go to Door County or Wisconsin Dells.

“We make it here and sell it here,” said Harry Schaff at Rocky Mountain.

Fudge varieties include vanilla peanut butter, Snickers, Oreo and black cherry truffle.

Harry Schaff’s personal favorite candy item is something called a “Bear.”

“It’s a giant turtle,” said Harry, referring to the nutty, caramel, chocolate confection. The Bears might have pecans or cashews.

“They’re a meal in themselves,” Harry said. “They’re really big.”

Korpal’s latest favorite is his peanut banana pretzel balls, although he added, “I never stay loyal to one thing.”

All three stores also have selections of truffles.

“Truffles are huge,” said Harry, strolling past a display of the beautifully decorated candies.

Sweet Dreams has added some festive truffle flavors, including eggnog, creme brulee, s’mores and gingerbread. The store has carried as many as 20 varieties.

Allo Chocolat has 12 flavors of truffles and "meltaways" that will be featured during the holiday season.

The shop also has a nice selection of molded chocolate appropriate for teachers, nurses, policemen and others. For instance, the teacher set includes a molded chocolate school bus, scissors, stapler, ruler and even a red apple that sells for $12.90. There are even small molds of Wisconsin with the state name on them.

Rocky Mountain also features chocolate dipped fruit, such as pineapples, kiwis, cherries, apricots and some huge cherry “bombs.”

All three stores can also put together custom boxes of assorted chocolates and candies for corporate or personal giving. Allo Chocolate and Rocky Mountain offer shipping of their products.

FYI

Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory

807 Genesee St., Delafield

262-646-7778

Open 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday-Saturday

www.rmcf.com/WI/Delafield50820

Allo Chocolat

234 W. Main St., Waukesha

262-544-8030

Open 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday-Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, noon to 4 p.m. Sunday

www.allochocolat.com

Sweet Dreams Candies & Gifts

126 N. Main St., Oconomowoc

262-560-9620

Open 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday-Friday, noon to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday; hours the week before Christmas will be 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday-Friday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday

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