Carolina Candy Company satisfies brings on the treats
At Carolina Candy Company, a love of baking, cooking, and creating incomparable sweets is a family tradition.
Owners KIMBERLY and CHARLES SMITH opened the shop doors in 2007, and the space has become a place to discover the latest in the chocolate, toffee, and confection trade. Originally a baker, Kimberly Smith ran her own bakery for many years.
The Smiths’ daughters LAUREN RICH and BROOKE HARRELL soon caught the baking bug, learning the trade – and the business – by following around mom’s apron strings. The mother-daughter trio, as they call themselves, have been creating gourmet toffees, chocolates, and innovative candies for almost two decades.
The original plan, says Kimberly Smith, was to open a bakery/candy store combo. The candy went so well, however, that they decided to expand to chocolates and confections.
These days, Carolina Candy Company, at 1045-B South Kerr Avenue in Wilmington, is best known for a wide array of gourmet toffees.
“Dark chocolate southern pecan is our best seller!” Kimberly Smith says, although a close second could be the bourbon chocolate turtles. From old-fashioned butter balls to peppermint bark, maple bacon to pretzel crunch bark, standard favorites take their place alongside innovative new tastes and gift ideas.
Each confection is gluten-free and all are handmade with fresh ingredients– “Every batch is made from scratch,” says Kimberly Smith. And once a treat is opened—if there’s any leftover—preserving the freshness becomes a top priority.
Happily, keeping toffee fresh is not so complicated, says Smith. Once opened, if not completely devoured, the rich flavors of toffee will stay fresh for up to six months. Place the toffee in a sealed plastic bag and store it in the refrigerator, she advises; for delectables such as chocolate bark, store them at room temperature in a sealed plastic bag for up to twelve months of enjoyment.
Packaged in-house and delivered near and far, the shop’s wares are finding a wider and wider audience. Local traffic abounds at the South Kerr location, but Carolina Candy Company is shipped both nationwide and overseas.
“We have customers in several European countries,” says Kimberly Smith, proud of her growing clientele; as the site’s motto suggests, even international visitors need their fix: “Once you try our toffee, nothing else will do.”
Carolina Candy Company also features specialty food and artisan gift items from other small businesses across the country, and they create custom gift baskets for a myriad of occasions.
To view more of photographer Daria Amato’s work, go to dariaphoto.com.
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