PORTAGE PARK — City News Cafe's signature bite-sized chocolate truffles, already a mainstay of the holiday season, are doing more than just stuffing stockings this year.
The hybrid newsstand and coffee kiosk, 4018 N. Cicero Ave., is setting aside part of the proceeds from its sweets sales this month to benefit the Chicago Police Memorial Foundation.
Since Dec. 9, more than 400 boxes have been sold through the "Thin Blue Line" sale, netting nearly $1,000 for the families of officers who were killed or wounded in the line of duty.
The fundraiser started as a promotion for "Stories of a Chicago Police Officer," a new memoir by retired police sergeant Larry Casey being sold at the store, owner Joe Angelastri said.
But after the success of last year's "cop-cake" fundraiser at Fannie's Bakery, Angelastri saw an opportunity to draw more attention to the store's homemade confections while helping a worthy cause, he said.
"I won't deny that there's some business benefit for us, like a win-win," Angelastri said."But police are getting a lot of negative attention right now, and we want to show our support."
Each box of a dozen mini chocolates features a grab bag of assorted flavors, including blueberry, plumb brandy, bourbon cherry and mint vodka.
Demand for the chocolates has grown intense since the fundraiser started, with some customers buying 10 or more at a time. City Newsstand saleswoman and resident pastry chef Donna Kosiba has barely been able to keep up with the demand, she said.
"Each batch is a two-day process, and I've just been making bucket after bucket after bucket," Kosiba said.
The "Thin Blue Line" truffle sale continues at City News Cafe through Saturday.
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