I need to vent

Joined Oct 9, 2002
For those of you who order chocolate online, do any of you order from chocolatesource? I can't begin to explain how frustrated I am.

A while back, I ordered an 11# Callebaut bar and they blew my order date. After explaining my frustration to them that within their posted shipping guidelines I shouldn't have had to run out to the grocery store for a few pounds of low grade chocolate at high prices because of their mixup, they comped the express shipping charges.

I thought that was a good gesture and figured they were worth trying again.

So this time I put in an order for 22# of Schokinag chips...a week ago mind you...hoping to have it in time for this weekend since I have a lot of baking to do. After emailing them to inquire about the status, I get this reply:

Had I not asked for an update letting them know I should have received my order already, I would not have known it was on backorder. More to the point, I shouldn't have been allowed to purchase an out of stock item.

What really kills me is they seem to have a strong foothold in the online chocolate offerings. I can't find the type of chocolate I wanted to order elsewhere. Close, but not the same. And it's too late to get it by Thursday. And other sites are more expensive.


Ok, maybe I can be a bit more productive now that it's out of my system.
Joined Mar 4, 2000
I wish I knew where to send you, for non-wholesale choc. in bulk. But I CAN tell you that I'm experiencing the same frustration with a company that sells fitnesswear. They are charging me $63 for their mistake, and it will be much to their expense when their name is posted by me all over various fitness websites. It's all business, and word of mouth (good or bad) is what it's all about!
Joined Mar 6, 2001
I hear ya.

I ordered a couple items from www.beryls.com and it took over 3 weeks to recieve my order. Plus I ordered this cake "mold" that turned out to be 1 sheet of transfer paper and 1/4 sheet of a textured plastic for 11.00, that was a huge joke.

How about we start a good and bad shipping recommendation list?

Bad: Beryls

Great: www.classicgourmet.com (you'd have gotten your chocolate in 3 days with-out any problems). They tell you on the phone as you order if anything is out of stock.
Joined Jan 15, 2001
I can sympathize! I haven't ordered chocolate online yet, so it's good to hear about these websites.

I just ordered online for the first time Penzey's spices and they rocked! The Vietnamese cinnamon is wonderful.
The only website I buy on a regular basis is Barnes & Noble.com for most of my pastrybooks. And I make sure I always get them only when their free shipping is available. Never had a problem with either website.
Joined Oct 9, 2002
Thanks for the support. I just needed to blow off some steam.

Wendy, that's good to know about Beryl's. I haven't ordered from them, but had them on my list of suppliers. If I do, I'll order with trepidation. And I'll check out the other site you mentioned.

On the Web site I'm building, one of my grand plans is to not only list sites to order ingredients and equipment from, but eventually add a user rating system. Not that my little site will make much difference (hey, I can dream, can't I?).
Joined Sep 9, 2002
I live outside the US and order quite a bit online. Not so much food products but alot of equipment. Have had good service from King Arthur Flour, Wiltons, and in particular cooksdream (www.cooksdream.com). I ordered some baking equipment (there was a 20% discount going on at the time) and everything was shipped together (as I had requested) with email updates all the way. Good equipment and good service.
Joined Nov 29, 2001
OMG, you must be ready to nuke the place. I ordered a gift online (not cooking related) for my brother and found out via a request for an update that it was not shipped.

Is this the best source pricewise? Are they worth putting up with - how about a slightly more advanced notice for them now that you know they are not dependable?
Joined Oct 9, 2002
Yes, they really are the best price that I've found, with the biggest selection. And a lot of other chocolate sites sell for them too. I ended up getting a few pounds of Trader Joe's bittersweet, but it's just not the same.
Joined Nov 10, 2000
Same As W. DeBord. I can't begin to tell you what a bunch of bozos that work at Beryl's.com.
I had rush ordered an item, and the wrong thing was sent.
Joined Mar 6, 2001
Yes, that's the place Thull. They aren't the cheapest but they only carry the best products and they do provide an excellent service.

I ordered some pastry tips and such on Tuesday of this week from Sugarcraft.com I got the package today, Friday. I'm impressed.
Joined Mar 13, 2002
a couple months ago, someone here recommended chocosphere. i've ordered twice from them & so far, the customer service, product, etc. has been great.
Joined Jun 28, 2001
I dunno how they compare price wise, but I am happy with Chocosphere. They have a big selection and are very good about communicating. I ordered two 5-pound bags of organic cocoa powder and they called to tell me they only had 1 bag in with another shipment on the way. The man asked me what I wanted to do and how soon I needed them. I told him to send the one bag he did have 2nd day and to send the other one ground whenever it came in. One other time he noticed the type of chocolate I was ordering and called to ask me what I was using it for. He then suggested another product which was the exact same thing, easier to use, and twice as cheap!
Joined Mar 22, 2002
Wow- great discussion. I'm always looking for cheap, good chocolate. My last order was from a place advertised in Chocolatier magazine called Gourmail: slabs of Valrhona, Barry, Callebaut (yes, I know they are they same company now) and El Rey. The prices were the same or a pinch higher as if I had gotten them from the supplier at the restaurant (can't order at my curent restaurant). The kicker was that my order of two 11 and one 6.6 pound slabs came within a week, and they only charged me $4.50 for the shipping! The website www.gourmail.com quotes shipping as $4.50, but for all those pounds?
I wonder if itwould change over distance: The warehouse is in Worcester Massachusetts, about an hours drive from where I live. That might account for the speed, but not the shipping costs. Anyone else tried Gourmail?
I have tried Beryl's, and been happy with the service, although prices are high -Beryl was the only place I could find oval cutters, which I was convinced would change my life;) A cooksdream was my next place to order from, after I save some bucks.
Joined Jul 28, 2001
I'm just going to pop in and make sure you all are checking to make sure that you're not overlooking or finding a local gourmet foods importer.
Purchasing agents at hotels or clubs can usually refer you to someone. Most will tell you that they need a tax number, but if they have a showroom or customer pick-up you should have success just dropping in with cash. Most will also ups to you but most won't ship choco in the summer.

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