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Leonidas Old Town - no more leonidas chocolate!

they no longer have Leonidas chocolate for sale there... Now some inferior brand! Sign still says Leonidas? Something about Leonidas raising prices and each loc being a franchise.

Please tell me Larchmont loc not doing same! I have been addicted to these chocolates for many years!

yikes!

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  1. The Larchmont location stopped being a Leonidas a couple of years ago...I think it is called Chocoholics and it is now sells an inferior product at a higher price! I now get my Belgian chocolates from Chocolatt (I think they just changed the name to Lady Chocolatt) on Wilshire Blvd. near Bundy...no Leonidas, but quality fresh Belgian Chocolate!

    For many years I "commuted" to Brussels monthly...and I developed a taste for the best Belgium had...Mary, Wittamer and Pierre Marcolini were the best... Fresh Leonidas was very good (the See's Candy of Belgium) but the stuff shipped to the US was not that fresh and suffered from a poor distribution network (per the Leonidas Salt Lake City shop)...interestingly, I was advised to purchase my Leonidas on line through Amazon...the product was very fresh but a little expensive! I now get Mary from a small shop in San Francisco and Pierre Marcolini from their shop in New York (they may close!!)

    I just remembered...Macy's Union Square in San Francisco has Leonidas...maybe cheaper shipping from them!

    7 Replies
    1. re: TravelPath

      Thanks for the info. I will look elsewhere. Travel or buy online, maybe a trip to their store on rue Dauphine in Paris is in order where my fix began back in 2000:-)

      BTW- Diane Kron's tiny shop in Beverly Hills has a few rather good selections, not Belgian however, and like I said, FEW selections. Very good powder coated truffle type things.

      1. re: Claudem

        It seems that almost every train station and airport in Europe has a Leonidas in it...but in Paris there are so many incredible chocolate shops, I would find it difficult to go to Leonidas there...one bite of a piece of chocolate from Christian Constant on Rue Assas will change your life!! I took a two day chocolate tour of Paris in the 90's...oh my gosh...I have not been the same since!

        I really can't understand why an international city like Los Angeles can not support premium chocolate...first Neuhaus, then Galler and now Leonidas...gone!! Diane Kron's chocolate is good...and then I agree with you...only a few selections!! I think Americans are used to paying under $20 for a pound box and can not get used to spending more for an artisanal product...sad!

        1. re: TravelPath

          A friend recently brought me some candy from a little shop in Basel by the name of Läckerli Huus. All I have to say is "wow" those were some great candies. (these were their pure fruit ones they call "Gelée Russe").

          http://www.laeckerli-huus.ch/default....

      2. re: TravelPath

        I just want to second the Chocolatt rec that TravelPath just mentioned. Good stuff, not a chain, the people are very nice. Much better than Leonidas.

        1. re: bad nono

          I third the (now) Lady Chocolat rec. It's the same chocolates from the previous, "Chocolat." The couple now running the place are from Italy - very nice, informed and do a great wrap job on gifts. I've never been to Belgium so I have no baseline, but I find the chocolate products there to be really good stuff. Conversely, I found Leonidas (the Santa Monica store) to be slightly above average, and like others have mentioned, lack of freshness was an issue with some of my choices. With Lady Chocolat in the Westside, and Leonidas gone, no change for me.

        2. re: TravelPath

          Hi TravelPath, I love that you compared Leonidas with See's as I think that's a relatively apt comparison. I also tried Leonidas while in Belgium and when you have the opportunity to taste their chocolate side by side with some of the best chocolates in Brussels it becomes clear that Leonidas is strictly mid-range (albeit tasty) fare. A local friend of mine guided me to a shop with just outstanding chocolate... I'll try to find out which one it is.

          Mr Taster

          1. re: Mr Taster

            www.marcolini.be

            Spectacular! (But again, I can't vouch for their mail order service... we purchased individual chocolates from the woman at the counter who elegantly selected them for us with her white glove)

            Mr Taster

        3. Yeah, when I visited "Leonidas" in Santa Monica a few weeks ago I also found out that Leonidas had moved out and another chocolate shop had moved in (although it still said Leonidas everywhere). I tried these new chocolates, and although they were no cheaper than Leonidas there were vastly inferior. The person at the chocolate shop told me that Leonidas had left the west coast altogether. However, you can still buy it online and have it shipped to the west coast.

          1. Sad. Unfortunately I stopped buying Leonidas chocolates some time ago because freshness was hit-or-miss. I used to travel between Amsterdam and London frequently, and would always pick up a selection at Schiphol. The chocolates available in the LA stores rarely had the same intensity of flavor.

            1. If you're open to trying another chocolate shop in Old Town Pasadena, there's the little-noticed Mignon Chocolate just a few blocks away on Holly. I only tasted a small sample once and have been meaning to go check out the rest.

              4 Replies
              1. re: avivale

                Thanks! I will most certainly check that out.

                1. re: Claudem

                  I was really disappointed by Mignon. Their shop looks great, the chocolates look great, but they are pretty pedestrian. To their credit, I think their flaws are due to inexperience rather than cheap production methods. Or perhaps the Armenian palate for confections is just different than the Western European palate. It's also possible I've just been spoiled by Maison du Chocolat and Manon when I lived several blocks from their respective shops in Manhattan.

                  1. re: Peripatetic

                    I agree with you on Mignon...I wanted to like it but it disappoints... Maison du Chocolate will ruin you for most other chocolate available in the U.S....NYC has 3-4 shops and we in SoCal can't even get one!

                    1. re: Peripatetic

                      Well that's too bad. Thank you for doing the legwork for us.

                2. I am from Belgium and shop at the store. Chocolates are a very personal purchase, some people like Starbucks and some people don't. Both brands are fresh Belgian chocolates and I found the new brand to be absolutely delicious. They sold over fifthy kinds of chocolates, YOU have to carefully to choose the kind you like and which appeals to you.

                  8 Replies
                  1. re: annemie

                    Hi annemie, welcome to Chowhound. What store are you talking about? What brands?

                    1. re: Peripatetic

                      Well personally while Leo is good stuff, no doubt, I recently found out about the outlet for NeuHaus....

                      Living in Belgium sure has some advantages. Ok, so where in LA preferably close to LAX or between there and Palmdale had good chocolate these days?

                      1. re: Wayward biker

                        Not close to LAX but much closer than Palmdale is to LAX is Lady Chocolatt on Wilshire in West LA. They're about five minutes west of the 405 on a good day.

                          1. re: Nicole

                            http://losangeles.citysearch.com/prof...

                            ADD: Looks like they are gone...(and another one bites the dust...)

                            1. re: Servorg

                              I can't believe they're gone before I even knew they were here! :(

                              1. re: Nicole

                                Sounds like that's a good reason to travel to the actual factory outlet just outside (a bit) of Brussels, Belgium. Stock up, see the tulips, hit a fritte stand, tour the windmills and tulips just down the road in The Netherlands....back to Belgium for some great beer and food....oh and more chocolate.

                                1. re: Wayward biker

                                  You don't want to stock up too aggressively. I once made the mistake of buying some Leonidas chocolates with raspberry cream filling two weeks before Valentines day, and by Valentines day most of the flavor had disappeared. There was only a hint of raspberry left.

                    2. The store looks closed down for good now...unless it was to remodel?

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: dlew308

                        Okay. If you see it open again please post so someone can take down the CLOSED sign I'm now going to virtually hang up on their door.

                        -----
                        Leonidas
                        49 W Colorado Blvd, Pasadena, CA

                        1. re: Servorg

                          Yes, it is closed. I am pretty sure it's gone for good, at least from what I could gather when I stopped by.