Popular Bruntsfield chocolate shop and cafe to close after 10 years

The Chocolate Tree in Bruntsfield. Pic: Neil Hanna
The Chocolate Tree in Bruntsfield. Pic: Neil Hanna
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A popular chocolate shop and cafe in Bruntsfield is set to close after 10 years.

The Chocolate Tree co-founders, Ali and Friederike Gower, announced in a letter to their “beloved customers” that the shop will be put up for sale.

It opened in November 2009 and is known for its artisan chocolates and hot chocolate drinks and specialises in premium organic and vegan chocolate.

The message, posted on Facebook by Ali Gower, says the reason for the move is because “our lives have changed” and “we are ready for new challenges.”

It adds: “I’m incredibly proud to have made a success of the business here, and to have had such a wonderful level of support from the community.

“From student respites and family outings to first dates and lover’s trysts, the space here has provided memories for so many of us, and we hope it will continue to do so after our departure.

“It’s been a wonderful time, and an important chapter not only in our lives and our children’s lives, but in the lives of everyone the business has touched during this time. We are forever grateful.”

The letter says the intention is to take their brand Chocolate Tree further towards achieveing its “true mission.”

The mission is to bring fine flavour chocolate while supporting environmentally friendly agriculture and ensuring ethical, socially responsible trade and “putting people and the planet before profits.”

The plan is to increase production at their East Lothian factory in order to produce more chocolate and buy more cocoa beans to support cocoa farmers around the world.

The focus now is on raising their children, and on new product development and spending more time with farmers and communities of cocoa origin.

The letter says that it is hoped a new owner will be found soon and that feedback is welcome.

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