Spartan warriors of yesteryear worked themselves into a buzzing, chocolate-induced rage before battle and frequently proclaimed, “No one knows the truffles we’ve seen,” upon return from a campaign. Sample battle-worthy treats with today’s Groupon: for $10, you get a chocolate and espresso tasting for two (a $22.30 value with tax) at Leonidas Chocolate Cafe on Chicago Avenue in Chicago or on Wilmette Avenue in Wilmette.
Leonidas Chocolate Cafe indulges persnickety palates with a wide range of cocoa’d confections crafted using premium ingredients from around the globe. Swing by with a loved one or chocoholic street mime to sample a preassorted selection of a dozen seductive sweets (a $14.82 value before tax), including two Princesse Enrobée fondant pralines, hazelnut-chocolate pralines cloaked in dark chocolate. Two Alexander le Grand Lait pieces are also in attendance, intermixing milk chocolate, soft caramel, and coffee in a combination richer than a lottery-winning rapper. A pair of buche massepain pistache pieces boast more nuttiness than even the most absent-minded professors, and two classic truffles deliver a multifaceted cocoa-y punch. Wash down the remaining buttercreams and orange ganaches with two shots of high-end Illy espresso (a $5.50 value before tax).
Leonidas Chocolate Café
Founded in 1913, Leonidas produces more than 100 kinds of Belgian chocolates and disseminates them to sweet teeth the world over. Inside the cozy Chocolate Café, hot-chocolate beverages are sold alongside solid chocolate callettes, each made in accordance with traditional methods from 100 percent pure cocoa butter, fresh butter, and fresh cream. Leonidas's chefs create additional treats with hazelnuts from Turkey, morello cherries from the Périgord, and walnuts from Grenoble, with items available in-store and online. The staff encourages decadence and serves an assortment of fresh truffles such as the perle coco, which is forged with milk-chocolate ganache and coconut flakes.