Graham MacDonald has come up with a winning combination for his loyal customers - gelato and chocolate.

The Covered Market trader and his wife Jen launched iScream geleteria six years ago and have been improving the business ever since.

But Mr MacDonald loves to be innovative and two years ago he launched another unit at the city council-owned market, Wicked Chocolate and the double whammy of gelato made from local ingredients and luxury chocolate keeps customers satisfied all year round.

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While the summer is prime time for selling ice creams, in the Christmas, staff at Wicked Chocolate are extremely busy.

Oxford Mail:

Mr MacDonald said: “For us the driving force has always been the gelateria but we realised we needed something to act as a balance in the colder months and chocolate was the obvious choice.

“We opened Wicked Chocolate at the beginning of October 2019 and it has been very popular.

“Its peak periods are Christmas and Easter and then you are back into the gelato season.

“In some respects the gelateria is the simpler business because the gelato is made from fresh every time whereas with chocolate you have to think about best before dates and stock levels.

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“We have completed two of our chocolate orders for Easter already, even though it’s difficult to predict what is going to happen with coronavirus.

Oxford Mail:

Mr MacDonald is hopeful his shops will help to take his customers’ minds off the pandemic.

He added: “Everyone needs a bit of cheering up and chocolate and ice cream are both a little bit naughty and decadent - it’s a pleasure for customers to buy it for themselves or give it away as presents.”

The trader who was once an estate agent has sourced greengages from a local farmer to make sorbetto.

And he is just as keen to engage with local suppliers when it comes to chocolate.

Catrin Burr, from Cholsey, has been supplying Wicked Chocolate with her Auroso brand.

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Mr MacDonald added: “Catrin buys direct from a grower in Madagascar where the cocoa is harvested and turned into chocolate in 14 days.

“She launched in April last year and we have started selling it.”

Oxford Mail:

The trader is also offering more vegan chocolate - something younger customers are demanding more and more.

During the lockdowns, the business had to find new ways of distributing its products and acquired two electric bikes for deliveries.

But as Christmas approaches, the footfall in the market should get a massive boost and customers will have the opportunity to see which luxury items they want to buy as presents - or as a treat for themselves. For more information on Oxford’s only independent, gourmet chocolate counter - visit

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