Celebrating The Spirit Of Robert Burns...

Are you celebrating Burns Night this Friday 25th January? If you’re raising a toast to the spirit of Robert Burns - perhaps at a Burns Supper - we have the perfect compliment to your after-dinner dram…

Discover our luxurious single malt whisky liqueurs via pittenweemchocolate.co.uk or in our village shop on the high street in Pittenweem.

An exclusive collaboration between the Pittenweem Chocolate Co. and our Belgian chocolate makers - and presented in an attractive wooden box - our liqueurs are the perfect artisan gift for the malt whisky connoisseur.

Looking for a suitable dram? Arran Whisky has created a Robert Burns whisky!

Happy Burns Night! May we tak’ a cup o kindness yet…

A Blue Zone State Of Mind..

What do the terms ‘January Blues’ and ‘Blue Monday’ mean to you? According to a thick flurry of news headlines, this is the most bleak time of year and Blue Monday - 21st January 2019 - is the most depressing day. So, we’re turning the concept of feeling ‘blue’ on its head and sharing the secrets of ‘blue zones’ - the happiest, healthiest places on our planet. By celebrating the blues of a different kind, maybe we can lift spirits in Scotland…and beyond! 

Feel-Good Food

According to studies, the ‘blue zones’ of health boast the highest concentration of centenarians and clusters of people who grow old without health problems. Two famous blue zones - Greece (Ikaria) and Italy (Sardinia) - are known for their traditional, mediterranean diet, which is high in vegetables, healthy fats and contains smaller amounts of meat and dairy. It’s naturally high in locally-grown, unprocessed dishes too. Here in Fife, we’re lucky to have the Ardross Farm Shop and lots of markets, including the regular event at Bowhouse. So, there’s plenty of inspiration if you want to get busy in the kitchen. Or, treat yourself to our ‘blue zone’ style dishes at Cocoa Tree Cafe. We highly recommend our:-

  • thick and nourishing mixed bean soup

  • mediterranean-inspired toasted focaccia (Barnetts Bakery) with tapenade, roasted peppers, tomatoes and greens

  • hummus and tapenade snack plater

Charm Of Costa Rica

According to research, Costa Rica is a blue zone for both health and happiness. Author Dan Buettner believes their all-round wellness can be attributed to 3 magic ingredients: pleasure, purpose and pride.  Of course, we also know that this beautiful country is a home to the mood-boosting cocoa bean! Learn more about the endorphins-inducing power of cocoa and dark chocolate via Readers Digest. And you can find our collection of dark chocolate - handmade in Pittenweem - in our village shop and online.

Spirit Of Community

Feeling a sense of connection to the people around us is vital to our health and happiness. While social media has a part to play, there’s no substitute for up-close community to combat feelings of loneliness. In the world’s blue zones, there’s a clear emphasis on family and connection. For example, in Okinawa, Japan, people have a close-knit ‘moai’ to offer support throughout the ebb and flow of daily life. Even if social clubs and group activities aren’t your thing, it’s still worth getting out and about. Here in Pittenweem and around the East Neuk, we’re so lucky to have an abundance of traditional, village market places - from butchers and bakers to libraries, post offices, pubs and cafes.  And if you get out there, you may just bump into someone who’ll help to put a spring in your step...

What’s The Point?

The answer to that question is different for each one of us. Yet, blue zone studies show that having a passion - sense of purpose - is vital to wellness. What do you care about? What gives you pleasure? Can you plan an experience that will lift your spirits? It might be taking a course, de-cluttering, volunteering, writing to a loved one, helping a neighbour, organising a day trip…or just arranging coffee with an old friend. 

The Walk Of Life

Connecting with the natural world - and getting some exercise - is another ‘blue zone’ staple. Here in Scotland, we have an abundance of beautiful coastal walks, parks and country trails, so there’s every reason to explore. And of course, if you want some serious exercise, look no further than the steep, historic wynds of Pittenweem. Start at the harbour and work your way up to the high street. We’ll be in our shop and cafe, ready to welcome you with a warm fire and well-earned refreshments…

Discover more via these uplifting articles:- 

National Geographic (Blues Zones - Happiness)

National Geographic (Blue Zones - Health)

Time Magazine - 5 Places Where People Live The Longest And Healthiest Lives

Equally, if you’re concerned about suffering from ’seasonally affected disorder,’ or feeling depressed, you can find more advice via NHS.

Wishing you health and happiness….

Sophie Latinis
Oh, When You're Big In Japan...
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…so goes the classic pop song. And, did you know….Scotland and Japan have some big, historic connections?  For example, an Aberdeenshire merchant - ‘the Scottish Samurai’ - helped to create the Mitsubishi corporation and a Japanese man was a lead engineer on construction of the Forth Bridge. So, it’s with great excitement that the Pittenweem Chocolate Company is able to advance this ever-blossoming relationship, with the introduction of our Ginger Toms in Japan.

Handmade in Pittenweem, our chocolate ginger tom cats are now available via Felissimo, a prestigious mail-order catalogue. The Japanese company were searching for artisan, off-the-beaten-track suppliers and during their travels, the trail lead to Pittenweem. In order to showcase the new product, Felissimo has even created a short video for the Japanese market, celebrating our shop and village.

So, maybe one day, Pittenweem will be big in Japan too! Meanwhile, we think our new partnership with Felissimo is the cat’s whiskers…

Have you tried our Ginger Toms? Luckily, they can be found closer to home too. Made with no preservatives, the chocolate cats are available in our village shop. Discover our collection - available for international delivery - via our online shop too. These really are the puuuur-fect treat…

On The Map! Our Cocoa-Dusted Footprints Can Now Be Found In Lonely Planet...
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So, it’s a brand new year - time to look ahead, plan exciting adventures… and we’re already feeling on top of the world! Why? We’re pleased to confirm that our Cocoa Tree Cafe is now listed in the iconic travel guide, Lonely Planet!

Cocoa Tree Cafe will also feature in the brand new 10th edition of Lonely Planet Scotland - out in April 2019. You can take a peek right now at lonelyplanet.com/scotland/pittenweem and spark inspiration for your wanderlust.

The Pittenweem Chocolate Company - and our Cocoa Tree Cafe - is open daily from 10am to 6pm throughout the year, except Christmas Day and Boxing Day. And of course, we look forward to welcoming visitors - from near and far - as we voyage onwards into 2019….

(image by Robert Melville)

Wishing You Love, Laughter And Light...

The winter solstice has arrived - shortest day and longest night - bringing with it a natural transition into the festival holidays! So, may we take this opportunity to say T H A N K  Y O U for your ongoing support, custom and friendship during this year. It is truly appreciated. We also wish you love, laughter and light during the festive season and onwards into 2019. Sophie & the team, Pittenweem Chocolate Company. XOXO

ps. As always, we are open daily from 10am to 6pm, all year round, except Christmas Day and Boxing Day. Hope to see you soon…