A NEW artisan chocolate shop in the Westgate centre has been given a top rating as it stocks up with festive treats for Christmas Shoppers.

CoCo Chemistry moved into a ground floor unit of the city shopping centre in October and has achieved the highest rating of five stars following a surprise visit by Oxford City Council’s health team.

Founded in 2014m the independent business was created by chemists Richard Phillips and Julie Wishart, hence the name, who decided to turn their scientific talents towards producing mouth-watering chocolate.

Based in Wiltshire, the Oxford store is the first for the company in Oxfordshire.

The chocolatier’s website states: “We make each and every batch of chocolates by hand from our kitchen in rural Wiltshire.

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“Less than 24 hours after chef James has made a fresh batch of caramel, it will be on the shelves for an experience unlike any other on the high street.”

The company adds: “No giant production facilities or mediocre long-life stock.

“You’ll find the freshest and most daring flavours in our fresh chocolate counter.”

It said cubes contain ‘real fruit purees’ and fresh dairy for the ‘most intense flavours you can find’.

CoCo Chemistry is covered by the Cocoa Horizons Foundation, an independent, non-profit organisation which focuses on cocoa farmer prosperity, building self-sustaining farming communities that protect nature and children.

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As well as shelves full of slabs of chocolate, filled caramel and praline truffles, chocolate ‘salamis’, caramel sauce jars, and hot chocolate spoons.

There is also tea, coffee and hot chocolate on offer.

Special creations for Christmas include a ‘pudding pinata’ which is a hollow pudding shell made out of chocolate, raisins and cocoa nibs then filled with dark chocolate fudge, blond chocolate crispy nuggets and milk chocolate marshmallow, and chocolate editions of a robin and turkey dinner, complete with truffle brussel sprouts.

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Though the shop is new it has already gained glowing reviews online, with one recent customer writing: “What an excellent addition to Westgate Oxford. Amazing artisan chocolate shop with delicious goods. I would wholly recommend a visit to CoCo Chemistry for an indulgent treat.”

It added: “They have a great selection of slabs, truffles, out of the ordinary delights and wonderful seasonal goodies. Lovely owners too.” To see a full list of what is on offer at the shop, which can also be ordered online visit cocochemistry.co.uk.