If you want Legacy Chocolates after May 30, you're gonna have to schlep to Menomonie, Wis. to get them as the Marshall Ave. location in St. Paul is closing for good at the end of the month. "Sales have just dropped off," says Mike Roberts, Legacy's founder and chocolatier. "We haven't seen that before."
A store employee who answered the phone at the store (Roberts works out of Menomonie) says customers have been lamenting -- some literally crying -- the shop's impending departure. Some have even started trying to collect donations to keep the store there.
The chocolates are well known beyond the St. Paul neighborhood the store resides in. A perennial City Pages fave (including being named "Best Chocolate" in 2007 and 2008), Roberts' attention to quality and detail have not gone unnoticed by those in the know.
Roberts says the Menomonie store, Legacy's original location, is still doing a fine business, boosted by its coffee sales (brewed a cup at a time), soups and other small bites. Roberts also operates a small farm nearby where he raises, among other things, grass-fed cattle.
So while Roberts has things to fall back on, he says the store's demise is definitely frustrating. "If we were in France, this [the recession] would not hurt us at all, Roberts says. He says he sometimes feels like Remy, the rat from the film Ratatouille, who keeps exclaiming to anyone and everyone the joys of good, wholesome food.
The store has been in business in St. Paul for four and a half years.
A few Legacy products are available online.