Tucked away in a far west corner of the Professional Plaza on Business Park Road in Greenbrier is a tiny little sweet sensation of chocolate sin.
Specialty custom made candies, chocolates and fudge can be gift boxed for any occasion by Reba Holland, the one-woman whirlwind at Sweet Temptations. For the last five years, she ran her wholesale business from a brick house just north of Greenbrier and has now opened her tiny shop for retail close in town.
Holland has been a wholesaler of fine chocolates and specialty fudge items, but she never really planned to do retail. She has retailers from Mississippi to Branson, Mo., who regularly call their orders in to her. She supplies products to Pickles Gap Fudge Shop, Vintage to Vogue in Conway, Shepherd of the Hills in Branson, several state parks, the State Capital gift shop, the River Market grocery and hundreds of other accounts in about six states. Her new decision to sell retail is now our scrumptious prize.
From 1993 to 1995, she had an ice-cream parlor and diner in Canton, Texas, and was making her candies one weekend a month to sell when "Trade Day" was held at her diner. One day someone walked in and wanted to buy her business.
"I walked out with my money and my clothes. It happened that fast," Holland said. She has been a single lady since 2001 and has a daughter, Tiara Robinson, who helped start her candy company.
When this reporter walked in on her quite late one afternoon, she was packing an order of 1,575 turtles and had other boxes containing 320 chocolate covered pretzel rods and 260 bags of toffee waiting to be bagged and shipped. With more than 30 different chocolate items in her inventory list plus 14 flavors of fudge, she is kept busy from 5:30 a.m. until sometimes 7:30 p.m. Her biggest seller is her caramel pecan pretzel rods — a creative, decadent delight formed from a pretzel rod dipped in caramel, then pecans, drizzled with chocolate, and finally drizzled with white chocolate. Every piece of candy is hand bagged and sealed in a cellophane wrapper. Then her gold label is applied before being boxed for retail.
The best selling fudge recipes are, in order: plain chocolate, chocolate pecan, chocolate peanut butter and rocky road, which contains marshmallow and walnuts. In addition to 11 kinds of nut clusters, Holland does specialty items like chocolate dipped Twinkies, chocolate or white chocolate Krispie or marshmallow bars, doggie temptations made safe for your favorite pet, and chocolate covered strawberries in season.
When asked what her hours are, she replied, "Whenever I’m here." Her typical day can be as varied as her candies as she meets the demand for her treats. Some days she may drive to deliver to various shops along the way to Branson. Other days she is elbow deep into making chocolates. Other days it is packaging or telephone work to keep her business rolling. She also supplies treats for fundraisers for schools, church groups or any occasion.
Call ahead at (877) 473-4845 or try dropping in between her "normal" hours of 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday at 17 Business Park, Suite 11, Greenbrier.