Sunday, December 24, 2006

Happy New Year!
This coming year, I've resolved to wipe high fructose corn syrup and other less than wholesome ingredients such as bleached flours from my diet. In fact, I've already stocked my cupboards with Caramel Pecan Brownies from Dancing Deer. Packed with wholesome goodness and accented with a deliciously crunchy layer of pecans and caramel, Dancing Deer takes pride in natural, straightforward ingredients like cane sugar and unbleached wheat flour. You'll find yourself saying: "I can eat that..I can eat that...oh yes!"

Friday, December 22, 2006

Reindeer Food
I found Tom & Sally's Handmade Chocolates while shopping for last minute stocking stuffers at Urban Outfitters. 16 years ago, Tom & Sally left their corporate jobs in Manhattan to make chocolate in Vermont. Their light-hearted approach to life is evident in their line of penny candies and handmade Belgian chocolates all packaged with a sense of humor.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Pa RUM pum pum pum...
T'is the season, if ever, for overly-spiked nog and other liquor inundated treats. In the spirit, I ordered a six pack of assorted mini Tortuga Rum Cakes. I had fond memories of the super moist, golden rum soaked cakes from Caribbean holidays past. I was excited to sample the chocolate. I ate the entire 4oz. bundt in a matter of minutes, well, seconds... It was just so chocolatey while still managing to be buttery, light, and fluffy. And while the Tortuga version contains just enough rum to authenticate the taste, it's not nearly enough to feel debaucherous. I plan to douse mine with a little extra for good measure. Each cake comes individually wrapped making it the perfect little gourmet something to give...

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Bravo Batali
In a quest for the perfect little gift items to warm my best friend's kitchen (I'd been searching for a set of Batali measuring bowls I'd spotted at the MOMA Store in Soho), I happened upon these gorgeous measuring spoons by Mario Batali. I love the slick design in, so what if they're technically called 'espresso'...

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Khaya Now
Bite into a brownie baked fresh in South Africa by The Khaya Cookie Company-- kay'a (meaning "home" in Xhosa), and change a life. The company creates employment for the men and women of the Khayelitsha township where one million people live below poverty and one out of every four children suffers from malnutrition. The holidays are all about giving. Why not give the gift of good, honest, work--and chocolate? If you order now, Khaya promises they'll get your order to you by December 25th.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Gobble Gobble
Accent your Turkey Day soiree with these clever little four inch sculptures by Jacques Torres. Molded out of both milk and dark chocolate, the hollow birds are great for nibbling or melting down for chocolate cake when all is said and done.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Somebody's Mother's
Any kid whose mom holds the key to killer chocolate sauce is darn lucky--for the rest of us, there's Somebody's Mother's. Stirred up by Lynn Lasher, Dallas based super mom and chocolate sauce savant. Lynn's wholesome heirloom recipe is absolutely heavenly drizzled over a scoop of vanilla ice cream and designed for sneaky spoons. The packaging is tasteful, no nonsense, and sweet--the stuff good moms are made of. The set of three is the perfect gift to kiss away lifes boo boos or those pesky holiday blues.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Asian School Girl Sweets
You don't have to tote a lunch box to enjoy these treats. Tricked out in Kitty, these milk-chocolate dipped biscuits are sophisticated enough to go with that Kitty bling on your wish list.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Luscious Living
Chocolate Cheesecake

The boyfriend found this adorable cheesecake from Luscious Living. I'm absolutely excited about their online cafe and clever branding. Both a chocolate and cheesecake enthusiast, here's what he had to say: If you're gifting to someone who doesn't eat lots of cheesecake, they'll be more than satisfied with the flavor. But for a cheesecake connoisseur, especially of the classic New York Style, the flavor is a bit wanting. The chocolate somewhat subdues the creaminess resulting in an interesting balance between chocolate pudding and cheesecake. But what it lacks in creaminess, it makes up for in packaging--The tin reminds me of the Neiman Marcus style rum cake, which was a perennial holiday favorite. Overall, this makes a really cool gift...

Thursday, October 19, 2006

A Little Piece of Zion
If you've ever enjoyed a cup of Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee (which often rivals the price of gold), you'll understand why I'm absolutely irie that the Vosges Zion Truffle Collection is available once again. The I-tal truffle flavored with Blue Mountain coffee, coconut, and dark chocolate happens to be my absolute, all time, Vosges favorite.

Monday, October 16, 2006

In the Bag
If you crave the sumptuous chocolate tarts from
Balthazar, or Jean Georges' decadent Warm, Soft, Chocolate Cake with a side of pistachio ice cream, then you'll love the Belgian brownie cake from Brussels based Le Pain Quotidien. The affordable little euro style chocolate pies beg to be paper-bagged and taken home. Trust me, you won't for a minute miss the pretentious plating, pricing, bells or whistles.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

The Young & the Stressless
Yesterday marked the official release of a line of note cards and mini journals that I designed for Potter Style/Random House titled The Young & the Stressless-Humor for Hip Chicks. They're Based on my experiences surviving in New York as a twenty something--young, fabulous, and sometimes a little broke. The purse-sized mini journals are a great place to keep notes on all of your fabulous chocolate finds. Check them out here. Best, Imani

Monday, October 02, 2006

Seeds Please!
Sunny Seed Drops seem to be sprouting up all over Manhattan (I even spotted them in a ravioli store on Sullivan) and while they don’t bloom into magnificent fields of full-blown, chocolate covered Sunflowers, the harvest hued candies do make for the perfect October snack. Sans the traditional salted shell, this re-mixed classic is all about a new kind of crunch. A paper-thin, M&M-like coating is followed by a subtle layer of chocolate, which makes for a nice enhancement to the the Sunflower’s distinct and flavorful seed. I suggest indulging by the handful!

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Dylan’s Digs
Served up by the daughter of Ralph Lauren, Dylan's Candy Bar is a destination for those sweet on classic Americana. I stopped by on an afternoon jaunt through the Upper East Side to find the shop filled with fanny-packed tourists ooohing and aahhing over the selection of NYC taxi shaped cookies and chocolate Statue of Liberty keepsakes. Small children scoffed down gummy worms and begged to take home rock candy, peanut brittle, and licorice strings. Gigantic Wonkaesque lollies swirl in dizzying primary colors and Shirley Temple tunes blare from the speakers. I waited on line a cool five to ten minutes to make my purchase. But I’m a not bellyaching--this multi-flavored, 18 piece chocolate sampler makes for a great gift.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Sweet Riot
Converse to subversive or violent outbursts of rebellion, Sweetriot appeals to those in favor of a more palatable progression. The socially conscious purveyors of dark chocolate covered cacao nibs push cultural awareness by educating consumers about their product's roots in Latin America, Africa and Asia. I devoured a full tin of the snackable contraband during a trip to the theater (the size is totally smuggable). My personal favorite is flavor 70--the perfect hint of espresso is added to the chocolate's tropical notes. Along with the nib's bitter crunch, it's quite an addictive combination. And if you're hungry for social change, I suggest a visit to their Social mission page to find out how you too can make some noise.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Chocolate for Cool Chicks
Seattle based Chick Chocolates has developed flavors to appeal to your inner chick-- is she Strong, Extreme or Nutty? Incidentally, the Shag-esque diva on the Nutty Chick packaging literally speaks to me. Furthermore, in my textured world, the combination of smooth milk chocolate, crunchy almonds, and delicate toffee makes for both a satisfying chocolate experience and a poignant emotional analogy. The point is, exploring your inner chick is not only insightful, it also happens to be delicious. 100% of the proceeds from their latest addition, Survivor Chick, go to women's cancer research. You gotta love that.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Chocolate Plush
you can’t exactly eat these chocolate donut friends by artist Heidi Kenney, I found their frosted little pusses irresistible. In fact, I woke up extra early today and got in line for one of 300 collectible limited edition glow in the dark donut keychains. Kidrobot NY and SF were also handing out free juice and donuts. My next post will be about real chocolate, I promise:)

Monday, August 28, 2006

The Dark Chocolate Pie
This bite of statistical candy is irressistable: according to, we happen to be among the 25% of households with dark chocolate readily on hand. And while our penchant for the refined continues to drive dark chocolate sales up 40%, confectioners hustle to cater to our every fancy, confirming that yes, it really is all about us... Ahem, speaking of percentages, I ate about 40% of this acclaimed flourless cake by David Glass this morning for breakfast. I found it in my freezer:) and the best part is that it stays fresh if frozen for up to 6 months.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Max Brenner Chocolate

Brunch at Brenner's new location in Union Square was sublime, sophisticated and satisfying. I was initially overwhelmed by the selection of offerings: chocolate bagels, chocolate pizza, chocolate pastry, a vast array of hot chocolate--the menu reads like a small book. Furthermore, I was not completely in the mood for anything sweet. Resisting my desire for a salad, I settled on The After Party Breakfast--warm waffles with white chocolate chunks, toffee bananas, creme fraiche and chocolate truffle sauce. Suprisingly it was more along the lines of the food that I craved than dessert. It ended up being a warm, fufilling choice--a perfect balance between the fresh strawberries, chocolate sauce and creme fraiche. My girlfriend had the omelet. It's served with a side of Brenner's famed chocolate cream, butter and toast. The chocolate was so tasty, that my brunch date, at our waiter's exhortion, forewent the bread, and went after the chocolate with her fingers. I wasn't offended, I both understood and agreed. I loved the hot cocoa. I chose the cocoa with orange zest. It comes in a signature Brenner hug mug, designed to fit cozily between your hands when you sip. The menu refers to it as the cappucino of cocoa, while the fruity orange and chocolate elixir went down as smoothly as afternoon tea. This is my new favorite retail experience as well. Brenner's packaging is awesome. I had to take a picture of his love me, love me not box--customize it with chocolates, and learn your love destiny as your lover takes away each piece. I could go on and on, but I promised my girl that I'd leave room for her guest blog:

So I woke up and I called my darling Chocolate Nerd and made plans to
visit this Max Brenner, this new chocolate Mecca that we'd been
discussing for the last week.

When we stood in front of the Max Brenner Chocolate by the Bald Man
shop it was not what I expected. The WWD article made me think that we
would walk into a Willy Wonka/Alice in Wonderland-style menagerie, but
the stoic brown façade with gold black lettering reminded me of any
large, upscale French-style bistro.

Once you go inside however you really are transported, not necessarily
by the absurdity, but the sheer scale of chocolate. And there are
definite whimsical elements in the decor: every wall has a quote
written on it, or the Bald Man's evocatively scribbled logo, or images
of REALLY yummy looking chocolate beverages in bespoke mugs.
There are
cocoa powders behind glass, bagels with peanut butter and chocolate,
chocolate pizza, a pipe running over the restaurant with 100% Pure
labeled on it (and you KNOW that they are talking about the
chocolate). The restaurant is outfitted with the classic brown French
bistro tables I'd expected and it buzzes with the sophisticated hum
that urban luxury shoppers provide.

There was a slight line when we arrived at 3pm on a Sunday, but within
4 minutes of talking to her the hostess barked out my name and we were
seated. We started with the Chocolat beverage, which the menu likened
to a chocolate cappuccino, I had dark chocolate and the Chocolate Nerd
had one with orange zest. It was served in the Hug Mug, a cup designed
so you wrap both hands around it in the "chocolate drinking ceremony."
(I swear, that that's what the menu said). Yum, yum, yum, yum, yum. I
was really ready to order another, but Max Brenner's is one of those
places where I feel stupid ordering dupes of any thing, as there are
so many new options. Why waste the precious space in my belly that
could be taken up by a chocolate bagel?

Brunch is an egg meal for me, so I ordered the omelet and it was
great, but as my girl noted, I rocked out on the chocolate spread that
came with my sourdough toast, finally forgoing the toast altogether.
The home fries were roasted and just salty enough, I loved them. After
entrees we were going to have the chocolate mess dessert, but they
were sold out…I guess that will be a reason to go back soon!

The restaurant would be an awesome place to a date with a person who
needs or would like a touch of whimsy, or else a fun treat for your
fellow chocolate lovers young and old. And since it's open 24 hours,
it might be my next after club spot. HOLLA!


Friday, August 11, 2006

New Zealand based Bloomsberry&CO is all about design, and chocolate of course. Their witty sensibility has led to international adulation among chocolate and packaging enthusiasts and those of us who enjoy a good chuckle. I first came across their Emergency Chocolate in a 2004 issue of Wallpaper*. Always curious to see what they’ll think of next, I was delighted to find their Chocoscopes--a brilliant astrological guide to chocolate consumption. Not only is it a double whammy ice breaker--you know the drill: "Hey, what’s your sign? Care for a piece of chocolate?" It also happens to be
astonishingly insightful. Check yours out:

-Eats the whole bar on the way home from the shop
Taurus-Loves good chocolate, especially if it is in expensive packaging
Gemini-Chooses their chocolate by taking a bite out of each piece
Cancer-Makes even the smallest bar last for at least a month
Leo-Likes to be in charge of dividing up the chocolate
Virgo-Cuts their chocolate with a knife and fork
Libra-Chooses two bars; one for themselves and one for you both to share
Scorpio-Loves to smear chocolate all over their partner, then lick it off
Sagittarius-Will only eat imported chocolate
Capricorn-Likes to be seen eating only the best and the most expensive chocolate
Aquarius-Loves chocolate-but likes to think they actually prefer carob health bars
Pisces-Shares their chocolate and forgets to leave some for themselves

Monday, July 31, 2006

Eye Candy
There’s really nothing remarkable about the Gianduja that I picked up at my visit to the Guggenheim, but it gives me an opportunity to talk about the Zaha Hadid exhibit. The work, which spans her thirty-year career as one of the world’s foremost architects is awe-inspiring and the spiraling structure of the Guggenheim, New York couldn’t be a more perfect backdrop. Born in Baghdad, Hadid represents as the first ever woman to receive architecture’s most prestigious award: the Pritzker Architecture Prize. A true visionary, she continues to reshape our world with her iconoclastic structures. If you need inspiration, this is a must see. While you’re at it, the gift shop offers this specially branded handmade chocolate bar by Christopher Norman Chocolates in Hazelnut Gianduja (30% cocoa content), Mocha Dot, and Bittersweet Crunch (bittersweet laced with cocoa nibs). At $6 for the same exact 2 oz. bar that sells for $4.50 on the Christopher Norman site, you’re pretty much paying for the keepsake.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Cool Beans
What pray tell, has me awake at 5:30 in the A.M.? I've been recklessly indulging in my personal supply of Dean's Beans Dark chocolate coated coffee beans. No frills here, it's all about the product--reasonably priced, certified organic, eco-friendly, free trade, coffee. The team at Dean's is involved in an enviable amount of efforts to make our world better. There's reforestation projects in Peru, water and rural electrification programs in Sumatra, well building in Ethiopia, coffee cooperatives in Papa New Guinea, health care clinics in Timor and initiatives to fund prosthetics and therapy for land mind victims in Nicaragua. Not to mention, Dean's carbon-conscious delivery trucks are fueled by vegis to go along with the company's solar paneled roofs. Whew! it's a wonder how they get it all done, then again, if they're dipping into their supplies, I'd bet they're so completely wired!

Monday, July 10, 2006

Bravo Italia!!!
Since we all can't drop everything and fly to Rome, what better way to celebrate Italy's 2006 FIFA World Cup victory over France than by filling our cups with gelato. il laboratorio del gelato is a favorite. Even better, they'll conveniently ship your order the same day in Manhattan if you place it before noon and overnight otherwise. Chocolate lovers will go pazzo over their extensive list of modern flavors. I suggest the chocolate hazelnut, chocolate kahlua, thai chili chocolate, and milk chocolate malt makes a great shake! Enjoy!!! And congrads to Italy! Bravo Buffon!

Sunday, July 09, 2006

As mentioned in a previous post:
Matcha Madness, the limited-edition, Bobbi Brown and Vosges, dark milk chocolate and matcha green tea beauty bar is finally available. I was about to order one from Vosges, until I realized that even before tax and shipping, a $6, 3.4 oz. bar would set me back $13 due to a $7 summer handling charge. I never do mind splurging for chocolate, but in this case, I'd prefer to pick one up from Bergdorf's. If any of you beat me to it, by all means, please share. I'd love to hear what you think.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Choxie has Moxie
Just as I was finding myself in a dark chocolate malaise Choxie was dropped on my lap. It's brazen merger of milk chocolate, espresso, toffee and almonds gave my taste buds a welcome reprieve from the world of dark chocolate. You can tell Choxie has bite by its "tiger-esque" tan and brown striped box. Besides the amazingly gratifying taste what surprised me the most was that this audacious confection is the product of Target. Nevertheless, if you pick one of these up, buy two, you’ll thank me later.

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Fit For A Princess
I just happened upon this Gift Box from Empress Chocolate. I confess, I'm not much interested in sampling the Strawberry-Kiwi truffles, as the choice of fruity flavoring seems more suited to the palate of a pre-teen. I'll send a box to my niece while she still thinks that all chocolate is created equal. In any event, I'm positive that she'll just love the illustration and who knows, maybe I'm the one missing out.

Monday, June 26, 2006

La Dolce Vita
Domenica Bertolusso and Chef Beppe Montanaro, the proud owners of TartufLanghe, have been purveyors of the coveted Piedmont Tartufo since 1968. And how sweet it is that they’ve branched out to chocolate. Like the first ever chocolate truffle, Tartufo dolce d’Alba is the chocolate interpretation of its namesake. True to the classic, the truffle is fashioned into an irregular shaped nugget to appear as if it had been plucked straight from the earth by one of those indispensable pigs. Beneath the dusty layer of dark brown cocoa powder is a smooth ball of bittersweet Italian chocolate bursting with sumptuous chunks of rare IGP (Protected Geographical Identity) Piedmont hazelnuts (among the best variety in Italy). And the great news is that for a few Euro, you can have the authentic tastes of Piedmont imported straight to your door.

Monday, June 19, 2006

Coco Loco
The bartender at a friend's BBQ just tipped me off to this Astor Belgian milk chocolate bar flavored with Malibu rum. But don’t get too excited--it doesn’t actually contain any rum. Instead, a
Malibu coconut rum-like flavoring is infused with light and creamy milk-chocolate. If you ask me, it lacks that extra little umph that only true rum can achieve. Nonetheless, I enjoyed it in the same way that I enjoy virgin Pina Coladas--the taste is classic and undeniably good, yet that extra little spike is always welcome, and in this case, terribly missed.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Dina's Diet
If for health reasons, you're unable to indulge in the richer chocolates, but you still have cocoa cravings, then Dina's Chocolate bars may be right for you. Created by Dina Khader, a Mount Kisco based nutritionist, to suit the needs of her health conscious clients. As dieters often feel deprived, Dina suggests that her clients treat themselves to a 1oz. serving three times a week. This way, they have something to look forward to, which helps to keep them on track. At 73% cocoa content, the certified organic, extra dark, notably bitter, low glycemic, chocolate bars are sweetened with evaporated cane juice and flavored with health giving foods like cholesterol lowering almonds and antioxidant rich green tea. But be forewarned, the lack of refined sugar, milk products, and other yummy bad stuff is apparent.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Canvasing Chocolate
The only thing Art Historian Erica Fowler-Decatur loves as much as art is chocolate, and of course her husband Michael. In a mission to promote the arts, the two drempt up Art Bars. Each bar contains a card featuring one of forty-eight works from a group of contemporary and child artists. Ten percent of the proceeds are donated to The Community School of Music & Arts and The International Child Art Foundation. Art Bar's fair trade certified organic chocolate is sweetened with unrefined cane sugar and comes in a cool, futuristic looking, air-tight, eco-friendly package. The Swiss chocolate bars: milk chocolate, milk chocolate with hazelnuts, dark (58%), and dark with coconut are definitely not your run of the mill charity bar. I say, collect them all! The chocolate is yummy, it's for a great cause, and the art cards make quaint little bookmarks:)

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Wickedly Good Brownie
My boyfriend eats a lot of brownies and he rates this one pretty high, possibly one of the best. Trust me, he eats enough of the things to be considered a connoisseur. His opinion is backed up by another reputable source--Oprah has named these guys one of her favorite things.The rich chocolate aroma alone is divine, and then there's the near perfect texture--very light, not too chewy, not too cakey. I'll tell you a little secret-if you pick them up late afternoon from the Fat Witch bakery in The Chelsea Market, they're half off to make way for the fresh morning batch.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Chocolate Bar Buzz
If you're looking for something to do, check out New York Magazine's list of cool Chocolate Bars
Mood Chocolate
by NewTree

While everyone seems to be buzzing about chocolates health benefits, the team at NewTree takes the concept to new heights. In addition to the natural minerals and antioxidants already present in their high content-73% Belgian dark chocolate, each bar, branded with its own concept: ie. Sexy, Vigor, Renew, Tranquility and Forgiveness, is infused with corresponding herbs and stimulants.The Sexy-Energizing bar is flavored with pungent pieces of ginger and contains guarana extract, which is often found in energy drinks and stimulates the central nervous system. The chocolate has a nice snap to it, and the dark chocolate and ginger combo has always been a favorite. I can’t say how extra sexy or energized I felt after indulging in a few pieces, but either way, I commend them for the concept and the nice, clean packaging.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Pretty as a Péché
Raleigh based Péché (French for sin) imports handmade chocolates from France, Belgium and Lebanon. They then intricately wrap and fan them in foil. Though I prefer them as is, they can be further adorned in finery such as tulle and ribbon to suit yor fancy. I liked what was inside--an assortments of sophisticated milk and dark chocolates flavored by various fruits and nuts such as hazelnuts, pistachios, coconut, cherries and dates.

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Chocolate Humidor
During the summer months, I place my chocolate in the fridge so that the precious goods won't melt. Eureka! The geniuses at Montreal's Chocolat 15-18 offer this ultra modern, unabashedly functional humidor to keep your treasured estate chocolates at 15-18 degrees celsius, the perfect temperature for preserving chocolate year round.

Monday, May 29, 2006

Matcha Madness
Meiji's Matcha Melty Kiss, imported Japanese confections made of matcha green tea and dark chocolate, certainly live up to their name. The delicate cocoa dusted coating gently dissolves on your tongue to reveal a creamy kiss of bitter green tea. While matcha is traditionally enjoyed in the Japanese tea ceremony without sugar or milk, here the chocolate adds the perfect touch of body and sweetness. The now trendy combination of chocolate and green tea has caught the attention of chocolatiers, tea enthusiasts and the antioxidant obsessed. In fact, Vosges Haute Chocolat and Bobbi Brown cosmetics are launching a matcha chocolate beauty bar in July.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Pump It Up
As Ralph Lauren’s former Chef, Ilene C. Shane of SweetBliss learned a thing or two. Her fabulous Pumps & Purses, handcrafted from Belgian dark chocolate are filled with a ribbon of creamy caramel and embellished with seasonal designs. At one pound per pair, it’d be wise to share, which is why they’d make the perfect centerpiece for your next cosmo affair.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Recchiuti--The Flavor of Frisco
San Francisco based chocolatier Michael Recchiuti recently tapped Brian Barneclo, a local muralist who has been painting the town for a decade, to expand his artistic vision to chocolate. Barneclo’s chocolate designs are inspired by the historic Mission District--known for it’s ecclesial beginnings, vibrant murals, and Latin flavor. Crafting graphically embellished chocolate where taste is not compromised has proven a difficult task for some, but not for Recchiuti. His incredibly creamy ganache, handmade with 65% dark chocolate is perfectly merged with a subtle cinnamon malt and a bold wild rasberry and is nothing short of rapturous.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Chocoholics Anonymous
Those closest to me have coined the New York Metro Chocolate Meetup Group "Chocoholics Anonymous" when in fact the monthly sessions are more like exuberant celebrations of confection, replete with outstanding bottle service, divine chocolate, and a plethora of chic New Yorkers—quite the opposite of the church basement, support group scene. This month’s Meetup was dedicated solely to the distinguished art of chocolate tasting, which was achieved via the sampling of extraordinary (and not so extraordinary) chocolate from plantations as far away as Madagascar, Venezuela and San Tome. Oddly enough, I still managed to leave the meeting with a few additional items that could possibly qualify as contraband. Michel Cluizel’s Les Champignons--magic little mushrooms fashioned from nougatine (similar to praline, a paste made with sugar and ground almonds), caramel, and dark chocolate induce a heightened sense of elation. Cluizel's Chocolate Covered Coca Nibs, for "concentration, energy and bliss" are prescribed 3, as needed and come with a disclaimer "May cause euphoria." I confess, I may have overdosed. Until we meet again next month...

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Fashion meet Fauchon
It’s easy to mistake Paris based Fauchon for Fashion, with its trademark logo and posh New York address. In fact, I like to think of Fauchon as the Chanel of confection. Try giving the fashionista in your life one of their impeccably stylish signature mini pink purses filled with gorgeous Gianduja and Carre Or. Throw in a jar of the rose petal preserve (I know it's not chocolate, but it's too sublime to ignore) and she’s bound to forget about that hot pink Chanel item she’s been coveting…at least temporarily.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Cuckoo for
Cocoa Bon

You can tell that Cali based Cocoa Bon takes chocolate seriously by the sophisticated look of their packaging. They forgo the ubiquitous paper and foil wrapping for a clean, portable tin. This attention to detail also applies to their chocolate. I enjoy the Dark Chocolate Gingersnap which for such a tiny morsel is packed with intense flavor. Most of the varieties such as the Dark Chocolate Mint and Chai Chocolate Caramel are relatively tasty, while the true star of the show is the Cocoa Bon 72--An unadulterated bitter sweet dark chocolate with a 72% cocoa content. What you get is cacao beans, pure cane sugar, soy lechitin and vanilla. The nickel sized confections are intense and robust and are sure to be a hit amongst the cocoa elite.

Friday, April 28, 2006

MarieBelle's Spring Showers
When my boyfriend brought home Maribel Lieberman’s limited edition Spring Showers Box, featuring a reproduction of the "Umbrellas in the Spring" print by her husband and artist Jaques Lieberman, my eyes completely lit up. Mrs. Lieberman, chocolatier, designer and founder is clearly a proponent of the marriage between good design and fine chocolate which, as an illustrator by trade, and chocolate enthusiast by hobby, happens to be the perfect incarnation of my two loves. Made of premium dark, milk and white chocolate and up to 72% cocoa content, each lovely design corresponds to it’s own luscious indulgence. You get to customize your box when you buy them from her Broome Street boutique. My box contains such flavors as: capirhinia, cardamom, champagne and espresso. Unfortunately, they’re simply too pretty to eat! If you’re expecting a full report, you may have to wait until I bring myself to bite through all of that gorgeous design.