Peanut Butter Fudge. Dark Chocolate Fudge. S’mores Fudge. Mint Chocolate Fudge. Inside Out Reese’s Fudge. Decisions, decisions, decisions. A trip to Chatham, Massachusetts‘ Candy Manor was one of the highlights of my recent weekend trip to Cape Cod and Martha’s Vineyard. For this indecisive chocoholic, I have to admit, it also was a bit overwhelming.
My friend Lizzie told me about the place when she was prepping me for our trip. Growing up, she spent most of her summers on the Cape and was a frequent visitor to the Candy Manor on Main Street. She tried to prepare me, but how could she? To the right of the entrance, a long glass counter filled with dozens of varieties of their famous handmade fudge greeted me. Farther back, there were more display cases, filled with truffles, chocolate covered nuts and pretzels, cream- and caramel-filled treats, and so much more.
(FYI: Candy Manor also accommodates those of you not as interested in chocolate, and has a whole wall with bins of jelly beans, Jordan almonds, saltwater taffy, licorice, and other treats.)
A couple of blocks away, on Seaview Street, is a shop that’s not as sugary but just as tempting to browse through. House on the Hill Antiques is run out of a tiny room behind Dick Soffey’s real estate business. With antique maps and postcards, 28-star flags, and centuries-old lockets and china, the shop is a hodgepodge of all things Americana. And, if for no other reason, go to talk to Dick. He knows the town inside and out. He’ll tell you how much Harry Connick, Jr. and others paid for their houses in Chatham. He’ll talk about Barbra Streisand visiting his shop but not buying anything and about Dustin Hoffman’s affinity for presidential campaign buttons.
It’s not hard to spend an afternoon exploring Chatham with its antique and trinket shops, lighthouse, fresh seafood restaurants, and B&Bs.
And, if you didn’t know better, you’d have no reason to leave the main drag. But, three miles west of the Candy Manor and House on the Hill, still on Main Street, is Marion’s Pie Shop.
Strawberry. Blueberry. Rhubarb. Apple. Cranberry. Peach. And various combinations of these – available in two sizes – are baked and ready to go. Don’t be fooled by the shop’s name. There’s so much more than pies. From New England clam chowder and lobster rolls to coleslaw and potato salad, the list of comfort foods goes on. I highly recomment the chicken parmesan. Take it home, put it in the oven, then finish it off with some pie a la mode. The food coma will totally be worth it.
Photos: Stephanie Robichaux