They’re among the most unusual and (sometimes) dreaded side effects of pregnancy, and once one of them grabs hold, it can be impossible to shake. Cravings, both run of the mill and cringe-worthy, are as mysterious as they are varied, leading some women to pine for strange snacks and leaving others with no unusual hankerings.

In the past, there was no shortage of theories surrounding what cravings for certain foods might mean. One popular old wives’ tale led mothers-to-be that the sweet tooth they developed during pregnancy meant that they’d give birth to a girl.

Today, those beliefs have been widely discarded, even as cravings continue to be an issue for women. Although those cravings are as diverse as the women who have them, there are some that are particularly common, including salty snacks like chips, fries and pickles, and treats like ice cream. One sweet item that always tops lists of most-craved items, though, is chocolate.

It may seem obvious (who needs to be pregnant to long for chocolate?), but the rich confection perennially tops lists of the treats most sought-after by expecting women. Some practitioners of alternative medicine believe that cravings for chocolate might be triggered by a shortage of magnesium, which you can normally find in whole grains, nuts and seeds, and leafy green vegetables.

However, nutritional experts are divided in their opinions on the meaning of women’s pregnancy cravings – or if they have any meaning at all. Many believe that there’s no link between the foods women want, and what their body (or baby) actually needs.

That said, once a pregnant hears the siren call of chocolate-y treats, it can be hard to overcome. While nutritionists discourage women from caving to all of their impulses, sometimes the best way to combat cravings can be to indulge them once in a while.

At Chocolate Brunette, pastry chef Micol Corno knows just how satisfying a small treat – made with only the finest ingredients – can be. Each of her artfully crafted chocolate creations, from her Nutella-based, melt-in-your-mouth Heavenly Bite cookie, to her array of bite-sized truffles, is petite but packed with flavour. The result is a small, but satisfying answer to the chocolate cravings that so often plague soon-to-be mums.

Although absolutely decadent (Micol uses only high grade Belgian chocolate and an exceptional selection of nuts like cashews, pistachios, and hazelnuts), her products aren’t over-the-top. Micol eschews trendy toppings like buttercream, and opts instead for ganache and chocolate drizzles.

Whether you’re expecting, or simply have a desire for chocolate that you just can’t shake, Chocolate Brunette’s ever-changing assortment of freshly baked goods is an easy choice for anyone with a sweet tooth. And, with top of line coffee and espresso playing a supporting role to Micol’s chocolate-based creations, it’s also an ideal spot for new mums to recharge and re-caffeinate.