Sweet success for Doncaster’s chocolate cafe

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Two trainee baristas have joined the staff of a popular community café which is expanding both its menu and events programme.

The Hot Chocolate Lounge in Denaby, which is funded by the Big Lottery and run by Doncaster West Development Trust (DWDT), has now provided jobs for four people less than a year after opening as well as offering ongoing volunteer opportunities.

Shannon Reeder, 20, was appointed earlier this year and was recently joined by Megan Ackerman, 19. Both new recruits live in Denaby and have previous work experience including knowledge of the food service industry. They are receiving on the job training in areas such as barista skills, food hygiene and customer service and thoroughly enjoying their part-time roles.

The Hot Chocolate Lounge supervisor, Libby Carl, said they were both making great progress, interacting with customers and growing in confidence.

“As we’re a training café, customers might sometimes have to wait a little bit longer for their orders at busy times but learning in a real work environment is a very effective way for people to gain new skills and enhance their long-term employment prospects,” she explained

“We make sure we serve quality food as quickly as possible and we’ve just introduced some fantastic new additions to the menu,” added Libby.

Among the latest offerings is a tempting choice of afternoon teas including one designed especially for chocoholics as well as a classic selection and a mini one for children. Customers will need to book 24 hours in advance and can expect traditional items such as sandwiches, cakes and pastries or indulge in even sweeter treats including chocolate chip scones served with praline chocolate ganache.

Evening diners will also be able to sample specially selected dishes at the café’s next bistro evening on Saturday, July 15th. The Taste of Yorkshire themed menu has been created with the support of Mexborough-based Factory Foods and the event will also feature live entertainment. For full details or to make a booking for the next bistro night or an afternoon tea, contact The Hot Chocolate Lounge on 01709 296790.