New Cocoa Planet Chocolate Factory, Tasting Room and Modern French Cafe

Mmmm, chocolate. And it’s extra mmmm, when that chocolate is healthy, packed with all-natural ingredients, premium Fair Trade-certified Guittard Chocolate Co. dark chocolate cacao, and low sugar. This is what we get at the new Cocoa Planet Chocolate Factory in downtown Sonoma. Even more, the recipes are non-GMO-verified, gluten-free, vegan, wheat, peanut-free, and made with lactose-free milk or almond milk.

Cocoa Planet Chocolate Factory

Still, the thin, round wafer candies are extraordinarily delicious, pressed with little beads of citrus, peppermint and other fillings that owner Anne McKibben calls “pearls of flavor.”

Set in an actual factory design, the boutique spot features tubes crossing the ceiling, bringing liquid candy from the melting machine to a die plate machine that creates the final confection. You watch through glass walls, sample the final product, then purchase it by the box.

Also plan on spending a few hours here, since Sonoma resident McKibben offers a French café, too, with gluten-free dishes like cassoulet, quiche and Croque Madame, plus a tasting room for wine, beer, port and chocolate pairing menus, global teas and hot chocolate drinks.

Details: 921 Broadway, Sonoma, 707-343-7453, cocoaplanet.com.