I now know the cure for eating too much chocolate.

It’s easy. You consume a small amount of very good chocolate.

I did this on Thursday, while talking to Julie Collier. Julie is the Commercial Director for Iain Burnett, The Highland Chocolatier, who opened a shop in St Andrews (only 22 miles from here) last year.

As I walked into the shop for the first time, my eyes were drawn to the tiny chocolate cubes on the counter: free tastes for potential customers. Four different chocolate confections, one being the signature ‘Velvet Truffle’.

Pick it up.

Smell it. Aha!

Taste slowly.



Honestly, this will put you off chocolate gorging for life. It is fabulous. It is so fabulous that you don’t want too much. You want just the right amount. Maybe one truffle cut into those adorable little cubes. And then another tomorrow, and the next day, and the next.

However, I didn’t go to the shop to eat Velvet Truffles, though that would have been reason enough. It was to discuss collaboration in a chocolate/choc-lit event in November. A free event with free chocolate. How could you possibly not go if within travelling distance?

Oh but you don’t know when it is. Or where.

b2ap3_thumbnail_CHOC-HALF2.jpgThe reading/tasting will be held in Zest Juicing and Coffee Bar, which is on South Street in St Andrews in Scotland. Those of you who have already been in St Andrews for StAnza, the poetry festival, will know this coffee sanctuary well. It is not a chain. It is expertly run by a real, dynamic, independent person: Lisa Cathro. It is a poetry-friendly café.

That’s the location, then.

And when? Thursday November 27th, 6.30-8.00 pm.

I know (because, apart from anything else, I have read the Highland Chocolatier’s blog for October 8th) that early evening is not really the right time for tasting chocolate. The whole event should be scheduled before breakfast, before even your first sniff of tea, let alone coffee. However, it is a very good time for poetry (again, in small quantities).

The plan is to introduce Blame Montezuma!, the HappenStance choc-lit anthology, with a couple of the contributing poets to help me. We will read a few poems, carefully spaced between chocolate facts and chocolate tastes from Julie. It will be hugely educative and very tasty. There’ll be something to suit every palate. All in all, an unmitigated pleasure.

And if you want any choc-lit books for Christmas gifts, they will be on special offer. And there’ll be postcards and badges. Merchandise to die for.

Am I over-enthusing? Sorry. It’s the chocolate.

It really was divine.

I have to go back.

And soon.


ps It’s National Chocolate Week from 13th October. Poetry gets a day. Chocolate gets a whole week.



  1. Dear Helena

    I remember once watching an interview with a woman of 101 who confessed to being a chocoholic. I immediately upped my intake of chocolate and have kept it high ever since!

    Best wishes from Simon R. Gladdish

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