For several years I have heard people talk about the chocolate tour at Angell & Phelps in Daytona Beach. Because of that I have also had it listed in various places on VCM as something for parents to do with their children. This week I went and took the tour myself (finally!) and this is my honest review.
I went with a friend to take this tour. She had two kids with her and I had three with me. From where we live, it took us (in two vehicles) 25 minutes to get over there. The tour was scheduled to start at 2:00 p.m. They offer several tour times throghout the day, but that's the one we were on our way to. We walked in the door at 1:50 and the 2:00 tour was already underway! Next one didn't start until 3:00, according to the sign, so we had to join this large group and follow along.
The whole tour takes you down one hallway, where you look in windows to see them making the chocolate. Without the woman talking who is guiding the tour it would literally take you one minute to walk the hallway. There are three large windows that she stops at, explaining what you are looking at. Problem is, the group is so large that those in the front see what she's looking at and the rest of us have no clue. By the time we get to move up to the window she's on to the next one and we never got to identify things as those ahead of us did.
The whole tour takes 15 minutes, as you stop at each window and listen to the woman talk. At the end, you get to have one piece (basically one bite) of chocolate of your choice. I chose a dark chocolate covered potato chip, which was yummy! Then you are pretty much at the chocolate store, where your kids will beg for the chocolate. And who can blame them? There are some really cool things in there, and they are pumped up about chocolate.
So the "free" tour ended up costing me $13 in chocolate, 25 minutes each way to get there, and the gas spent to drive there. Was it worth it? No. Not at all.
I say that if you are going to be in the area of Angell & Phelps anyway, then go ahead and stop in. But don't make a special trip for this tour. It's really not worth the time and gas you will invest getting there and back. Also, do plan to buy some chocolate. You and your child went there because of chocolate, and in all honesty one bite isn't going to cut it for the time and effort invested. The good news is that there are chocolates of all types and prices. Your child can pick out some cool $1 chocolates that are alligators, sea stars, sand dollars, etc.
One thing I will say that Angell & Phelps is good for is chocolate gifts. I saw some lovely items that would make for great chocolate gifts for people. There are a lot of unique chocolate gift items that look really cool! You could buy them in the store or even on their website and ship them to people out of state.
Everyone did like the chocolate that we purchased. I also like how the people who started Angell & Phelps started out on Mackinac Island in Michigan. Having grown up in northern Michigan I have been to Mackinac Island many times. Mackinac Island fudge is the best in the country!
Here are some pictures from my stop in at Angell & Phelps in Daytona Beach this week: