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It’s no secret that many of us are being asked to do more these days, and that includes chocolate bunnies.
In years past, it was enough for these creatures to arrive on Easter either hollow or solid, milk or dark, sitting or standing. Now, as a recent survey of Island chocolate shops and candy stores has uncovered, enrobed bunnies of every stripe are rising to meet the moment — chocolate bunnies depicted as mail carriers, bunnies clutching Easter baskets filled with other bunnies. There are ballerina and bodybuilding bunnies, even bunnies driving sedans.
Easter's glorious chocolate traditions will not be defeated. Below is just a sampling of area shops still open for business, many offering unique treats, custom-made Easter baskets and other in-house candy creations. Hours may be restricted — always call first — but the spirit of the season, and the celebration of renewal and rebirth at its center, lives on.
Chocolicious (74 Birch Hill Rd., Locust Valley): Chocolates in a basket, chocolates in a chocolate basket — there's never a shortage of cocoa goodness at this North Shore shop. Other Easter findings of note include 14 sizes of solid and semi-solid bunnies, M&M drizzled popcorn, chocolate-dipped Peeps, and lots more. Delivery, walk-in and curbside pickup available daliy from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. More info: 516-671-6835. chocolicious.com
Emile’s Candies (229 Merrick Rd., Oceanside): This South Shore destination encourages patrons to window shop from the sidewalk. Easter baskets of all shapes and sizes are on offer, each generously stuffed with chocolate eggs, jelly beans, malt balls and the like, and there’s a nice selection of gift boxes as well. Delivery by UPS is available, as is curbside pickup Tuesday through Saturday from noon to 4 p.m. More info: 516-766-0402, emilescandies.com
Henry’s Confectionery (8 Glen St., Glen Cove): “We know our Easter chocolates are a tradition for many families, so we would like to do our best to keep those traditions going,” reads a Facebook post by this North Shore stalwart diner and candy store. The 25-pound bunny and the raffle held for it might be absent for the first time in decades, but all your favorites remain. Hollow and solid dark, white and milk chocolate bunnies are plentiful in multiple sizes, along with a few dogs and ducks too. Delivery and curbside pickup available daily from 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. More info: 516-671-3222
Hicksville Sweet Shop (75 Broadway, Hicksville): Bunnies from 3 inches to an astounding 3 feet are on offer at this nearly-100-year-old candy store. House-made marzipan, coconut and marshmallow eggs, as well as sugar-free chocolates, are also for sale. Open for pick-up daily by appointment only. More info: 516-732-0365
Hildebrandt's (84 Hillside Ave., Williston Park): The Instagram page of this 1920s-era shop should be your first stop, where you’ll find Peeps dipped in housemade chocolate, bunnies wearing suits, vanilla creamed eggs, speckled malt balls and much more. Curbside pickup is available Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. till 8 p.m. More info: 516-741-0608, hildebrandtsrestaurant.com
Lazar’s Chocolate (72 Middle Neck Rd., Great Neck): This “fourth-generation chocolate family” and its two Nassau locations specialize in chocolate Easter baskets (as in the basket itself is chocolate), along with traditional, nonedible ones in multiple sizes. Shishkebabed bunnies marketed as pops, foil-wrapped chocolate carrots, and a 3-lb., 24-inch bunny ($150) may also be found. Shipping, delivery and curbside pickup available Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Other location at 350 Wheatley Plaza, Greenvale). More info: 516-829-5785, lazarschocolate.com
Reisterer’s Bakery (282 Hempstead Ave., West Hempstead): Elaborately decorated bunny cakes and cookies are standouts at this 89-year-old shop which, in addition to Easter candy essentials, offers a few decorate-your-own projects. First among these is a 12-inch chocolate bunny hutch complete with shutters, picket fence and what appears to be a new roof, plus candy to festoon it. Pickup or delivery offered ($5 fee) Monday through Saturday from 6:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sunday from 6:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. More info: 516-481-7636, rbakery.com
Schwartz Candies (169 Voice Rd., Carle Place): Specialty chocolate-covered marshmallows have long been the prize at this long-standing concern, but its bunnies and baskets are no slouch either. The extensive candy selection includes chocolate dinosaurs, frogs, fire engines, large hollow eggs and a bunny lugging an egg-filled cart. Phone orders are taken and curbside pickup offered Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Home delivery is also available ($5, select areas). More info: 516-294-2831, schwartzcandies.com
The Sweet Spot Shoppe (128 Manetto Hill Rd., Plainview): Fully loaded Easter baskets are still in good supply at this Plainview shop, and range from $30 to $150 depending on size and custom candy selections. Phone orders are taken and curbside pickup offered from noon to 5 p.m. daily. Shipping and delivery are also available. More info: 516-942-2639.
Bon Bons Chocolatier (319 Main St., Huntington): Custom Easter baskets stuffed with both toys and candy are on offer at this popular shop, along with jelly beans in 49 flavors and, naturally, seasonal-themed bonbons. Don't miss four-inch filled eggs in such flavors as raspberry cream, coconut, peanut butter and buttercream. In addition to UPS delivery, curbside pickup is available Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. More info: 631-549-1059, bonbonschocolatier.com
North Fork Chocolate Co. (740 Main Rd., Aquebogue): This East End store is beloved for its chocolate Long Island ducks and foot-tall sunflower pops, but bunnies in all shapes and sizes may be had, from a 3-inch bunny boxed with jelly beans and Easter grass, to a two-foot-tall behemoth. Custom baskets are sold, as well as an 18-piece box of miniature chocolate lambs, rabbits, chicks and more. Curbside pickup available Wednesday through Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. More info: 631-779-2963, northforkchocolate.com
The Sayville Chocolatier (6 Main St., Sayville): Black licorice jelly beans, another Easter tradition, are plentiful here, but you’ll also find baskets and the candies to fill them, chocolate egg dishes packed with truffles, a good selection of sporty and white mousse bunnies, milk chocolate hens and more. Curbside pickup available daily from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. More info: 631-589-6713
Star Confectionery (4 E. Main St., Riverhead): A destination for generations of Islanders and their Easter needs, this shop is offering a somewhat reduced selection this season. Still, a number of white, dark and milk chocolate bunnies are for sale in both solid and hollow, big and small incarnations. Eggs, both malt ball and foil-wrapped, are also popular. Curbside pickup available daily from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. More info: 631-727-9873, star-confectionery.com
Sweeties Candy Cottage (142 E. Main St., Huntington): "Long Island's original true candy store experience" may not be offering that experience these days, but owner Lisa Hodes has been working around the clock to produce Easter basket stuffers like chocolate carrots, hockey- and lacrosse-playing bunnies, and jelly bean-filled bunnies for those who refuse to make up their minds. More info: 631-423-7625, sweetiescandycottage.com