You may see that we are always talking about local places to get this or that. Here is one place in the Hudson Valley, that has been changing the way that chocolate is crafted and created, not just locally, but throughout the industry. This is just one of the reasons that they were recognized by Food & Wine Magazine as one of the 50 Best Chocolate Shops in America.

The reason that Food & Wine dug into the subject was that they found out over the course of the last year, American's were spending more on what was considered a 'higher quality chocolate' experience.

While there are many great places to purchase chocolates in the Hudson Valley, the business in Shokan that was recognized by the magazine, is Fruition Chocolate. Fruition was cited for their single-origin chocolates and their dark-milk chocolates.

It is also possible in your travels you have seen their bars available for purchase at local retailers. I think a few years ago, I kept seeing their Browned Butter Bourbon Caramels in a few places. My stomach might have been one of them.

What do you look for in a chocolate experience? Keep in mind there really is no wrong answer. Is it a piece of chocolate, high in cocoa content? A little bitter? Would you prefer something that has a touch of sweetness? Maybe the only chocolates that you care for are Reese's Peanut Butter Cups or Ferrero Rochers? Those can also be quite enjoyable at times.

When looking for a place to purchase chocolates, don't forget that you are probably within 30 minutes of many great, owner-operated chocolate shops here in the Hudson Valley. Remember to try them. All of them. Find which one you like the best and ask them questions like "What is single-origin chocolate? Where do you get your chocolate? Does where the chocolate comes from give the finished confection a unique taste? Why can some chocolate be bitter?"

But most of all, ask for a sample!

12 Mouthwatering Hudson Valley Chocolate Shops

Whatever the occasion is, support local and get your sweet fix at these local chocolate shops.

Gallery — Every Movie Theater Candy, Ranked:

What Are the Signature Drinks From Every State?