This article is sponsored by our friends at Rosalind Candy Castle. They have been making the best chocolates in Beaver County right in New Brighton for more than 100 years!
Sometimes in life, there are magical things that happen. Births of kids, marriages, pets brought into your life…
I had one of these magical things happen this past week when I got the YBC Golden Ticket to go behind the scenes at Rosalind Candy Castle in New Brighton. Even now a few days later, I am still smiling like a butcher’s dog! It was a great experience.
For those of you who aren’t familiar, Rosalind Candy Castle has been a staple of Beaver County since 1914. Over 100 years of candy making under their belt! This is also a family business, obviously passing the chocolate torch down from generation to generation over those 100+ years. I had the pleasure of meeting Michael and his sister Jennifer for my special tour of the candy castle!
Touring the Candy Castle
When I initially made my way inside, the cases of chocolate beauties had my complete and total attention. However, between the cases of chocolate covered nuts and truffles was the entrance to the back. Ooooooooooooo. I peeked inside and saw two gentlemen stirring a huuuge pot of something, and a lot of neat looking machinery. Michael and Jennifer greeted me with smiles and welcomed me in!
Seriously, just one more very quick sidebar on this. Making chocolate or working in the chocolate industry might be my dream job. Andy did me a huge favor by asking me if I wanted this article. Thanks bossman! Anyway, back to the factory…
The first stop we made were the ladies dipping things in tempered chocolate. Exactly like the I Love Lucy episode where she flips chocolate around. Three women, smiling and stirring chocolate with their gloved hands, carefully dipping each nugget to cover it and placing it gently in a paper cup and finally onto a tray.
I had no idea this type of thing even still went on anymore. I was under the impression that the chocolate was covered by machines. Rosalind Candy Castle is one of the last candy makers that does do this by hand! Very impressive!
One woman, Barb, has been dipping chocolate for SEVENTY YEARS. Full disclosure: I can’t think of much that I would like to do for 70 minutes, let alone 70 years. Kudos to you, Barb!
On to the Machinery
From there we moved on to the machinery. There were belts and vats of chocolate, gears and doodads. Michael and Jennifer explained what each machine would do. From chocolate molds to fondant, peanut butter and marshmallow making, each of these machines had a specific purpose.
The fondant is just another one of their handmade items at Rosalind Candy Castle. No five gallon buckets of pre-made, store bought filling found anywhere here. Same with their marshmallow and peanut butter. These folks control every aspect of what is going into their chocolate. You taste a peanut butter meltaway and you tell me that isn’t homemade.
Almond Butter Crunch
Next stop, those two men I saw when I peeked through the door. They were stirring a massive pot of almond butter crunch. Oh yes they were. And they had 3 foot piles on a table in front of them of nuts that they had roasted earlier that morning. The almonds were still crackling and there was warmth coming off of each pile.
Cashews, almonds, peanuts.. all roasted in house. Time from roasting to chocolate covered bites of love in the candy case? One or two days. Again, it all boils down to control.
Michael and Jennifer’s dad was one of the men stirring that almond butter crunch and he said it perfectly with “Quality in, quality out.” You can see that these folks care about the final product by how they care so much about each ingredient.
We moved on through a little kitchen within the factory, which seemed a little out of place. It was an old fashioned kitchen, with older white appliances and then a picnic table set up next to it. Michael told me that when he was a young kid, his grandmother would cook lunches in that kitchen. I could only imagine what kind of delicious food was served on that picnic bench!
By this point in the tour, it was apparent that I was going to need to eat real, real soon….
Finally, we stopped at the packing area. There were ladies wandering around large tables with stacks of boxes of chocolates. Each box of assortments is consistent in their individual chocolate placement. Meaning, the upper right corner of one box will have the exact same piece in the exact same position as another box of the same assortment. Consistency is key!
There have been people that have been eating Rosalind Candy Castle chocolate for 60+ years because of this. Unlike Forrest Gump, you do know what you are going to get in this box of chocolate.
Holiday Themed Candy
We wrapped up the tour strolling past the candy dipping ladies again and then back to the store. Along with the cases of treats, they also had rows of different chocolate molded pops. Most of them out now are holiday themed, however Jennifer and Michael explained that they will do special orders for whatever you would happen to need.
A chocolate Thanksgiving turkey in April? No problem. Easter egg in December?? No problem!
It doesn’t matter what you need, or even how many of them you need. You can give them a call and they will get them made for you. No minimums. No problem. I am going to have to keep this in mind when Toddler Beaverhausen is inevitably still asking about Santa in July!
Another thing that I couldn’t help but notice in the store was a huge, a HUGE, three foot tall chocolate Santa. This is just one of the charitable works that the kind folks at Rosalind Candy Castle do. This was a raffle for the McGuire Home, with 100% of the money raised going to that charity. Kudos, kudos for good deeds!
All in all, that was an awesome experience!! What they do in there is something that isn’t done anywhere else around here. Be sure to stop and load up on your holiday goodies and gifts. You will not regret it!
Thanks again for the tour, and for all of the R&D Samples! The Beaverhausen’s are devouring them!