Eric Barrera from Le Petit Chocolatier in Pialba.
Eric Barrera from Le Petit Chocolatier in Pialba. Alistair Brightman

Hand-made treats to trump supermarket chocolates

BEFORE you head to a major supermarket to grab a box of chocolates for your Valentine, consider a hand-crafted work of art from a local small business.

At Hervey Bay's Le Petit Chocolatier, it's not your average chocolate.

Owner Eric Barrera sources hand-made treats from chocolatiers all over Australia including Sydney, Melbourne, the Gold Coast and Maleny.

Based on a healthier and more natural form of fat known as cacao becca, the chocolates contain very little chemicals and less sugar than mainstream varieties.

"There is an art to creating these chocolates, Mr Barrera said.

"If it were easy everyone would be doing it.

"You pay a little more but they're good quality so you expect that."

Valentine's Day is one of the busiest days of the year at Le Petit Chocolatier with special heart shaped chocolates on the menu.

Mr Barrera believes the romance which drives people to exchange gifts on Valentine's Day shouldn't be reserved for just one day a year.  

"Being attentive and saying I love you is something we need to do every day," he said

"If we don't have love, what do we have?"

If you'd like to treat your loved one to something a bit more special this year, you're looking at $1.45 through to about $3.60 per chocolate.

Le Petit Chocolatier is located at 11 Main St.