Candy connoisseurs and seekers of sweets, set course for Scotts Valley.
Suite C of the Scotts Valley Junction shopping center, located on Victor Square, is the new home of Ashby Confectioners, a candy shop dedicated to bringing gourmet chocolates, marshmallows, truffles, and other tasty treats to its customers.
Although it's owner Jennifer Ashby's first run at a retail location, Ashby Confectioners has been in business for nearly a decade, providing wholesale rocky road and chocolate tortoises to restaurants such as Heather's Patisserie, in Aptos and supermarkets like New Leaf, Shopper's Corner, and De Luxe Foods.
“It just grew and grew,” said Ashby, who opened the location on Dec. 21 with her two employees. “We're just really excited to have a retail location.”
Ashby, a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, said that her first venture into being a confectioner began when she would make candies as gift for her friends and family.
From there, she spent years working out of rented space at Heather's Patisserie, where she focused on creating a select few items due to wholesaling commitments, and the limited prep space.
Now, Ashby said, there is room to make a wide variety of handmade sweets — such as the Meyer lemon lavender truffle, pate de fruit (pronounced “pat-duh-fwee”), and marshmallows of all flavors, including key lime, coconut, and lemon.
“We use a lot of locally grown organic herbs and fruits,” she said. “When I started using fruit from local farmers' markets, it made a world of difference.”
She said that her goal is to make as quality a product as possible, while using all-natural ingredients that are produced as locally as possible.
“If I can't get natural (ingredients), I'm not going to do it,” Ashby said.
A grand opening celebration is planned for Sunday, Jan. 26 at 12 p.m.
For more information about Ashby Confectioners, 16-C Victor Square, visit www.ashbyconfections.com or call 234-1171.