Got a serious sweet tooth? Sharon's Artisan Chocolates and Cheesecakes in Lexington, Tennessee, offers a variety of decadent desserts and other tasty treats that makes that two-hour trek seem awfully tempting, gas prices be damned. Thankfully, Memphians don't have to make that chocoholic commute to get their hands — and mouths — on them.
Each Wednesday, Sharon's owner Sharon Fajans loads her van with coolers of delightfully rich chocolate truffles and creamy sweet cheesecakes and baskets of freshly baked breads and drives them to the farmers market at the Memphis Botanic Garden. Fajans' top sellers include truffles in a variety of flavors, such as dark and milk chocolate, caramel, chocolate raspberry, mocha latte, and espresso. The truffles are beyond creamy, and the taste lingers a few sweet moments after the last bite.
Fajans also sells cheesecakes in classic, key lime, and chocolate. The key lime is exceptional: a tangy fresh melt-in-your-mouth twist on the classic New York-style variety.
She recently introduced her artisan breads, including rustic Italian, semolina, and focaccia. The baked breads come out of the oven at noon on Wednesdays before she heads to Memphis.
"I have an in-house kitchen in my shop. I do it mostly by myself and all by hand," Fajans says.
"I perfected the recipes over time through trial and error. My classic cheesecake recipe came from my husband's side of the family, but I've also come up with a 60 percent chocolate cheesecake and the key lime cheesecake for summer. They are all very creamy and light," Fajans says.
Fajans' retail shop opened last November in Lexington. Customers can purchase fresh goodies in the store, but a large portion of her business consists of special orders.
"I work with a wedding planner in Lexington and make chocolates for weddings and special occasions, and I do truffles for party favors and gifts," Fajans says.
Besides the aforementioned delectables, Fajans also makes biscottis, eclairs, dark-chocolate blueberry-walnut bark, apricot-almond bark, strawberry shortcake, and tiramisu, all from scratch. Fajans offers seasonal truffle flavors as well, such as pumpkin, eggnog, and peppermint during the winter holiday season. Simply put, she can whip up just about any treat imaginable.
Fajans has worked as a sous chef at an Italian restaurant in New York and also ran a chocolate shop in Arkansas, but she has been cooking since her youth.
"My mom was a baker, so I've been around it my whole life," Fajans says. "It's my passion. I love what I do. And I love chocolate, too," she says.
She will continue to offer her goods at the Farmers Market at the Garden on Wednesdays and hopes to rotate between the downtown and Agricenter farmers markets on Saturdays.
To place an order or to find out more about Sharon's Artisan Chocolates and Cheesecakes, visit her stand at the Memphis Botanic Garden's farmers market between 2 and 5 p.m. on Wednesdays or call her shop at 731-968-0400.
Sharon's Artisan Chocolates and Cheesecakes, 60 Natchez Trace Drive South, Lexington