Hilary Delamare

Choctails® was founded by husband and wife team Simon and Hilary Delamare. Simon's suggestion of putting cocktail flavours into chocolate took Hilary's chocolate-making hobby to new heights, until in May 2012, the decision was made to turn the hobby into a full time business. The domestic kitchen became a production factory by day, and the dining room was given up to become a place where hand-made chocolate is crafted

Disaster Strikes!

So there I was, running my little heart out throughout January. I’d set myself a weekly target of 5 runs a week – Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday – and managed my 9km loop over the majority of them, so by the end of January I’d run over 180km. Brilliant. This weekend, I knew a Sunday run was off the cards, as we were going to a 50th birthday party on Saturday evening, so I decided to go for a 10 mile run to earn me the extra calories and make up for the lack of exercise on Sunday. 10 kilometres in, my left quad was feeling a bit tight, but by then I had no option but to complete the distance. It gradually got worse. I stopped to stretch, but by the end of the run I knew I’d done myself some damage. I limped the last kilometre. So I’m now forced into gentle exercise and physio for a while. Hopefully not for too long ….. Did anyone I went to school with ever think I’d be fed up that I was unable to go out for a run ….. ?

Margarita Research

I’ve been marinading in tequila over the last few weeks as I research Margarita recipes. The classic Margarita traditionally consists of three ingredients: Tequila Triple Sec orange liqueur Lime juice in a 2:1:1 formula. This tends to produce a drink which is a little on the sour side of balanced, hence it is common to subtly up the degree of sweetness by adding sugar or agave syrup. The 2:1:1 formula works well either served straight-up or on the rocks. However, if blending to serve frozen then then drink will benefit from raising the degree of sweetness. A pinch of salt subtly enhances the drink’s flavour. Although the salted rim is synonymous with the drink, it delivers an intense hit of salt which masks the flavour of the drink. Chin Chin!

It’s Margarita Time

I have discovered that 22 February is National Margarita Day, which in my book is a day worth celebrating. To that end, I have been working on a Margarita collection. This has involved a lot of Tequila …..

Got My Mojo Working

Ah, the therapeutic effects of chocolate! After a week of restocking I feel much more fired up than a week ago. I even felt motivated to get most of my accounts done …. most …. not quite all, yet. I’ve also got back to training sessions this week, which has given me more energy, and I’ve got big plans for plenty of running in between times. We’re also doing some planning for trips away in the motorhome, which is giving both of us a boost. Before we know it the nights will be lighter and we’ll be dusting off the aircon unit and complaining about the heat!

Finding My Mojo

No, not my Mojito …. The first week of January is always a bit flat. We get a few online orders – usually people sending a thank you gift to friends and family after Christmas and New Year events – but nothing like the volume we have in December. It’s a good time to plan for the next year and catch up on admin and accounts, which is not always the easiest thing to motivate yourself to. Heigh ho. Next week we’re back in the kitchen making fresh stock, which is much more rewarding. Hurrah!

Happy New Year

I feel as if all we’ve done this week is prepare meals for people. Hopes of afternoons snuggled up with a book and a cuppa have disappeared in a whirl of late and lazy lunches, until it’s time to start preparing the next meal. I have managed to keep up with the running, though, and combat most of the effects of the festive over-indulgence. This morning we’ve both been for a long run. I managed a 10 mile distance, whilst Mr D went for a half marathon distance (ouch!) This evening we’ll be at Stoke-by-Nayland for the New Years Eve Gala Ball, with much dancing, we hope. So we could be on for a double steps goal by the end of today. With the training sessions and managing to run regularly I can fit back into my red dress again, which I’m very pleased about. Have a great New Years Eve, and we’ll see you in 2018!

Merry Christmas

The birthday celebrations have continued this week. On Wednesday we had a trip to London where we visited the Orbit and rode the helter skelter, before heading to Wogan House for a tour of Radio 2, sitting in on the Drive Time show. That’s a day neither of us is going to forget in a while! With online orders slowing down this week I’ve been able to catch my breath and begin Christmas preparations. So now we’re all cleaned down and tidied away for Christmas and it’s time to break open the bubbles and relax for a few days. I hope you all have a fabulous Christmas and we’ll see you on the flip side.

Party Mode

I’m all partied out. We’ve spent the last week celebrating Mr D’s 50th birthday. I had the idea to do ’50 ways to treat your husband’, so I’ve had to be quite creative. I began on 1 December with a whisky advent calendar, which contains some real gems. This last week has involved the midnight showing of The Last Jedi on Wednesday / Thursday. We’ve had a trip to Marcus Wareing’s Tredwells restaurant – stunning food in a relaxed atmosphere. We had a few friends and family round for drinks and canapes on Saturday, and then today we’ve had a Champagne breakfast with the immediate family. Right now, I’m craving salad and tap water …..