Hedgehogs, deer, and rabbits… oh my! Lynn Wright of Limerick, Maine is the master chocolatier and the creative genius who brings these and other tiny creatures to life as well as an array of traditional and unique fine chocolates and caramels. She has developed more than forty original recipes. Every piece is hand dipped, hand decorated, and is a labor of love.
Lynn started making chocolates in her home, a 19th century farmhouse, twenty years ago primarily for family Christmas gifts. In 2011, Lynn took the first of two on-line courses from Ecole Chocolat, a highly respected school with corporate offices in San Francisco and Vancouver, BC. The following year, she opened her home to the public for the Easter Holiday. When that proved to be highly successful, she opened her home again for Christmas and Valentine’s Day. In time she had a licensed commercial kitchen installed in her home.
When storefront space on Main Street in Limerick became available, Lynn jumped on the opportunity. She poured the same creativity and energy that she uses for her chocolates into decorating the space now known as Wright’s Chocolates. The result was stunning. Two large multi-paned windows give the building an old-world charm, as does the bead board ceiling and the original wood floors.
She also kept the original countertop and shelving. Lynn wallpapered a newly built partition with an exquisite nature scene: stylized birds, and flowers, on a dark background. Even the sign above the door, which was assembled and hung on a frigid day in January by Lynn and her son, Russell, was designed by Lynn. Although she still creates her chocolates within her home, Lynn now packages and ships her online orders from the Main Street store.
Lynn uses locally sourced and seasonal ingredients as much as possible. Maple syrup from Hilltop Boilers, butter from Kate’s Butter in Old Orchard Beach and cream from Harris Dairy Farm in Dayton. Even her honey comes from a local beekeeper, Bob Tim’s. Not because it is trendy, but because this is the way it should be. It ensures freshness and Lynn enjoys the relationships that she has developed with her vendors, a.k.a. neighbors.
Her chocolates are inventive, fun, and beautiful to look at as well as delectable. Along with Christmas deer and the Mustachioed Christmas Gnomes, she has created Thanksgiving Hedgehogs, Owl Apple Cider Truffles, Love Ewes for Valentine’s Day, and Belted Galloways for Mother’s Day. She has created milk chocolates and dark chocolates infused with such things as elderflower liqueur, pomegranate caramel, pear puree, dulce de leche and as if that were not enough, she also makes toffees and caramels.
It surprises most people that Lynn closes her operation for the summer months, a practice that is common with some of the fine chocolate houses of Europe. However, heat and humidity wreak havoc with chocolates. Besides, Lynn considers chocolate a seasonal food.
Lynn’s bottom line is making people happy. She has an eye for beauty, a lively imagination, and the drive and energy that it takes to succeed in business. A reviewer on her website described the store as a “hidden jewel in Maine.” And those of us who were lucky enough to have already tasted Wright’s Chocolates, we know that it will not remain hidden for long.
All photos by Lynn Wright. For more information, please visit www.wrightschocolatehouse.com