New recruit is aiming for sweet success with South Yorkshire cafe

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A creative chocolatier will soon be serving up treats to customers at a new community café.

Libby Carl, who has previously run her own chocolate manufacturing business and worked in hotels and restaurants, has been appointed manager of the Hot Chocolate Lounge in Denaby which is due to open in September. Visitors will find a tempting selection of sweet and savoury snacks on the menu including Belgian waffles and chocolate dipping platters along with more traditional soups, salads and sandwiches.

As well as being a meeting place and community hub for local people, the Hot Chocolate Lounge will also provide training and volunteering opportunities thanks to funding from the Big Lottery. Residents keen to improve their skills and job prospects can take courses including customer service, food safety and business administration while residents wishing to socialise or pursue hobbies can use the venue for group activities. Libby also plans to hold chocolate-making demonstrations to pass on tips about producing her favourite confectionery.

“I’ve always had a sweet tooth and enjoyed baking and cooking from a young age,” explained Libby. “I initially studied hospitality and catering at college and later went on to take a course in patisserie and confectionery. I learned to make chocolate and loved everything about it so it’s been a passion of mine ever since. I can’t wait to open the doors of the Hot Chocolate Lounge and start welcoming our customers,” she added.

Based in Grays Court, The Hot Chocolate Lounge is being run by Doncaster West Development Trust (DWDT) which has delivered successful community services across Doncaster and the Dearne Valley for more than 20 years. The project has also created jobs for two baristas and will open for business on Tuesday, September 13. An official launch, complete with entertainment and food-tasting, will be held on Saturday September 17 and everyone is welcome.

To find out more about training, volunteering or other activities at the Hot Chocolate Lounge, please contact DWDT on 01709 866466 or email info@dwdt.org.uk