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Food & Drink

GoNOLA Find: Blue Frog Chocolates

Blue Frog Chocolates creates artisanal chocolates made in house for any occasion, all from a quaint, cute shotgun on Magazine Street.

On Magazine Street near the Audubon Zoo sits a quaint, renovated shotgun house that is home to all things chocolate. Blue Frog Chocolates, founded in 2000 by Ann Streiffer, is where you’ll find artisanal chocolates made in house for any occasion, plus hard-to-find specialty chocolates and retro candies imported from around the world. Streiffer wanted a business she could retire with, and thought making chocolates would be fun. Sixteen years later, it still is a lot of fun and fills a niche that she thought was needed in New Orleans.

Blue Frog Chocolates is on Magazine Street, one block from Nashville Avenue, and only a couple blocks from the Audubon Zoo and Audubon Park.
Blue Frog Chocolates is on Magazine Street, one block from Nashville Avenue, and only a couple blocks from the Audubon Zoo and Audubon Park.

When you enter Blue Frog Chocolates, the first thing you’ll notice is the sweet aroma, just a hint of what’s in store inside this temple to cacao.

Named after the Aztec god of delights, Xocolati, who disguised himself as a blue frog and would appear to people as the frog while singing songs about chocolate, Blue Frog is the perfect spot for the chocolate lover, with chocolates sold by the piece or in gift boxes and shipping available anywhere in the United States.

In house, they make all the molded chocolates into various forms (crawfish, alligators, paddle wheelers, frogs, ballerinas, dinosaurs, globes, airplanes) and for all occasions (graduations, weddings, bar mitzvahs, birthdays — you name it). They also make a wide assortment of truffles and have display cases full of them for sale by the piece or in attractive gift sets.

Blue Frog Chocolates owner Ann Streiffer (pictured) and her staff are constantly making chocolate to pour into shaped molds representing any number of forms: frogs, dinosaurs, crawfish, oysters (with candied pearls), ballerinas, gavels...chocolates for any occasion.
Blue Frog Chocolates owner Ann Streiffer (pictured) and her staff are constantly making chocolate to pour into shaped molds representing any number of forms: frogs, dinosaurs, crawfish, oysters (with candied pearls), ballerinas, gavels… chocolates for any occasion.
All the south Louisiana fauna are represented at Blue Frog: alligators, crawfish, crabs and pelicans.
All the south Louisiana fauna are represented at Blue Frog: alligators, crawfish, crabs, and pelicans.
Jazz you can eat! All of the molded chocolates at Blue Frog are made in house.
Jazz you can eat! All of the molded chocolates at Blue Frog are made in house.
Gorgeous truffles fill two huge display cases in the main room of the store. They make all of these in the store.
Gorgeous truffles fill two huge display cases in the main room of the store. They make all of these in the store.
The toughest part about shopping at Blue Frog Chocolates is deciding what to get....
The toughest part about shopping at Blue Frog Chocolates is deciding what to get….
Stop in for one of their frozen beverages, like this Nectar Cream one, reminiscent of old NOLA soda shop flavors -- it's sweet, fruity vanilla taste is really like drinking a puffy, pink cloud. Nectar Cream still exists to this day as a popular snoball stand flavor.
Stop in for one of their frozen beverages, like this Nectar Cream one, reminiscent of old NOLA soda shop flavors — it’s sweet, fruity vanilla taste is really like drinking a puffy, pink cloud. Nectar Cream still exists to this day as a popular snowball stand flavor.

As I chat with Streiffer, I have to keep telling myself I will not have the chocolate covered Zapps potato chips. I will not have the chocolate covered Zapps potato chips. I will not….Those things are addictive, and you gotta have ’em while you’re there.

Another unique Blue Frog offering is its made-to-order sweet beverages, including an Icy Hot Chocolate, “a conundrum,” Streiffer says, “as it’s both icy cold and hot at the same time.” Streiffer doesn’t have to sell me on the Decadent Dark, a frosty, frozen concoction that was her first foray into beverages years ago. I’ve had more than a couple of them while out strolling down Magazine Street. Another popular flavor she makes is a Zesty Mayan frozen chocolate beverage, which is also really good: a little spicy, a little rich.

She whips up a frozen concoction that is reminiscent of retro New Orleans soda shops or the NOLA-based K&B Drug Store chain (now defunct) and still popular to this day: a frozen Nectar Cream beverage. Nectar Sodas are really a New Orleans thing, tasting sweet and vanilla-y, pretty in pastel pink. It’s like drinking a pink, fluffy cloud. (Note: In addition to Blue Frog, you can also find Nectar Cream at any snowball stand in the city or as an ice cream float at Creole Creamery)

Seasonally, Streiffer offers a Passover display, which includes several Kosher chocolates she brings in for the season: Matzoh crunch and chocolate frogs and locusts, which reference the Biblical Plagues of Egypt. Blue Frog makes a life-size Seder Plate for Passover, too.

The Passover display at Blue Frog Chocolates included full sized chocolate Seder plates, and Kosher treats like Matzoh crunch, and chocolate frogs and locusts (referencing the Biblical Plagues of Egypt.)
The Passover display at Blue Frog Chocolates includes full-sized chocolate Seder plates made in house plus Kosher treats like Matzoh crunch and chocolate frogs and locusts (referencing the Biblical Plagues of Egypt.)

I’m drawn to the retro candies like Necco Wafers and Bit O’ Honey, which as a kid I always pined for near the checkout at the convenience or hardware stores (oddly enough, both on Magazine Street.)

There are jars full of retro candies, including my favorites: Necco wafers and Bit O' Honey bars.
There are jars full of retro candies, including my favorites: Necco wafers and Bit O’ Honey bars.
Gorgeous candied flower bouquets are almost too pretty to eat. Almost.
Gorgeous candied flower bouquets are almost too pretty to eat. Almost.

Also at Blue Frog are beautiful candied flowers imported from Italy, Jelly Belly jellybeans, color-sorted M&Ms, and adult-themed chocolates for a bachelor or bachelorette party.

Bachelor and Bachelorette Party chocolates can be found behind the red curtain....
Bachelor and bachelorette party chocolates can be found behind the red curtain….

Everywhere you look, there’s something to see (and eat) in Blue Frog Chocolates. Definitely stop in next time you find yourself on Magazine Street — bring your appetite.

Blue Frog has pre-prepared truffle gift baskets, and can create a custom gift for you on the spot. They ship anywhere in the United States, too.
Blue Frog has pre-prepared truffle gift baskets and can create a custom gift for you on the spot. They ship anywhere in the United States, too.

Photos by Paul Broussard

Paul Broussard is a native New Orleanian, photographer, writer, and culture junkie. He regularly photographs for Visit New Orleans, Zatarain’s, and other great New Orleans brands, and his photography and writings have appeared in several national and international publications including Bon Appetit magazine and The Times-Picayune. He is the co-host of the long-running Stage & Screen radio on WTUL 91.5 FM.

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