Archive for February, 2010

26
Feb

L.A. Burdick Chocolates

by admin, in: France
L.A. Burdick Chocolates

L.A. Burdick Chocolates are known for making quality hand-made chocolate creations. These chocolates are not similar to those that you might buy from supermarkets or shops which usually contain more sugar than chocolate. L.A. Burdick chocolates are actually what experts might call as true chocolate creations. It is something of a rarity in US shores once upon a time.

L.A. Burdick first started when Larry Burdick first came back from Switzerland with a dream to make real quality chocolates in the US and not just the usual sugary stuff made available anywhere. Armed with this idea, Larry went on to create chocolate in the way that they should be made- with pure chocolate. He used dark chocolates from France and Switzerland which are known to have the richest flavors but were not that known in the US then.

From then on, Larry Burdick became known as one of the pioneers in making high end gourmet chocolate in the US. L.A. Burdick is most known for its delicious chocolate bonbons and has started branching out to other chocolate derived products since then. The chocolate maker has since received several awards for its chocolate creations and is still considered as one of the best in the US when it comes to gourmet chocolate.

25
Feb

How Chocolates Are Made Better Than Others

by admin, in: Reviews
How Chocolates Are Made Better Than Others
Description: Cocoa beans in a cocoa pod. Sourc...

Image via Wikipedia

Everybody can easily say that they love chocolate. But there are also others who try to look for more when choosing chocolates. They don’t usually settle for the ordinary ones. They look for chocolates that are better and offer a different experience not just limited to how chocolates taste. There are also people who look for the best chocolates among the rest.

But how would one determine which chocolates are better, if not the best? In searching for the best chocolates in the world, one should have certain standards in mind. And when it comes to determining the best chocolates, none other than the French seems to have the upper hand. In fact, the French has a high regard for quality chocolates as well as all things gastronomic. Their government even has set certain standards for manufacturing chocolates that should be strictly followed.

The French government has instituted certain regulations that every chocolate maker in France should follow. One of them is that it is prohibited to use vegetable or animal fat when making French chocolate. The makers should only use pure cocoa butter. When it comes to consistency, French chocolates should contain at least 43 percent cocoa liquor and with a minimum of 26 percent pure cocoa butter. In order not to fail on this aspect, most French chocolates usually contain well above the minimum cocoa liquor allowed by the French government.

When it comes to high quality chocolates, ingredients also matter a lot. The flavor and quality of chocolates may also depend on the quality and origin of cocoa beans being used. The best cocoa beans usually come from South and Central American countries as well as Africa and the Caribbean. All these usually work together along with the extensive expertise and experience of chocolate artisans to come up with the very best chocolates in the world.

25
Feb

Top Online Gourmet Chocolatiers

by admin, in: Reviews
Top Online Gourmet Chocolatiers
A piece of chocolate candy.

Image via Wikipedia

Everybody loves chocolate. But there are those who may have finer tastes in chocolate than others. There are those that fond of chocolates of the gourmet kind. For those who are interested in gourmet chocolate, here are some of the top gourmet chocolate makers that you can find online.

L.A. Burdick

L.A. Burdick is an online gourmet chocolate shop that specialized in making fine quality chocolates by hand. You can be sure that you have a truly special brand of chocolate with L.A. Burdick since everything is being made and refined by hand. Each chocolate has its own special touch given to it and no two batches of L.A. Burdick chocolates are exactly alike.

Christopher Norman Chocolates

If you are looking for more artistic looking gourmet chocolates, then you might go for those coming from Christopher Norman Chocolates. These chocolates are not just merely made for your taste buds; they are also a feast for the eyes. Christopher Norman Chocolates are not just your ordinary chocolates, each one is hand painted and even sculptured to make them unique in both appearance and taste.

MarieBelle New York

MarieBelle New York specializes in hand made and designed chocolates. Each one is meticulously made to resemble valuable gems and intricate works of art. Quality ingredients make their way into creating the chocolates with just that special touch to make each signature line quite unique.

Lake Champlain Chocolates

This specialty chocolate shop from Vermont prides itself of making quite delicious chocolate treats. The company first became known for their uniquely delicious handmade truffles. It has since grown to include signature chocolate bars and other chocolate novelties.

Romanicos Chocolate

Romanicos Chocolate is known for their delicious and unique truffles. Their hand rolled chocolate truffles are not only delicious but also beautifully made to become visually appealing to complete a total sensory experience.

24
Feb

Godiva Chocolatier

by admin, in: France
Godiva Chocolatier
LOS ANGELES  - JANUARY 13, 2005:  (FILE PHOTO)...
Image by Getty Images via Daylife

Godiva is considered to be one of the most widely known names when it comes to making premium chocolates. It has stood out as one of among the very best in an industry where excellence is highly valued. It has quite a history behind it, which may be the reason behind why it continues to excel in its field.

Godiva was founded in 1926 by Joseph Draps in Brussels, Belgium. Its name was derived from the legendary Lady Godiva, a medieval dame who once rode naked on a horse through town. This association seems to evoke images of sensuality, luxury and elegance to the chocolatier’s creations.

Godiva started expanding outside Belgium in 1958 when it opened its first boutique in Paris, France. It has since expanded all over the globe with over 450 Godiva stores now opened in around 80 countries.

Godiva is known for making fine luxury chocolates. But it also is known for making other products such as truffles, coffee and biscuits as among them. Aside from their regular chocolate creations, Godiva is also known to come up with signature and limited edition chocolates for those who do not settle for anything less.

19
Feb

Patrick Roger

by admin, in: France
Patrick Roger

When it comes to French chocolate, noted food connoisseurs swear by the name Patrick Roger.  Considered as one of the top ten French chocolatiers, Roger puts more emphasis on flavor.  Without it, he said in an interview, his business does not work.

Roger is most famous for his rochers, which are infused with ingredients that range from the traditional such as almond, pistachio, and coffee, to the quirky like oats, Creole rum, Earl Grey tea, and even jasmine.  He sources his ingredients from the most exotic of locations:  Cocoa beans from Sao Tome, Vanuatu, Ecuador, and Papua New Guinea, coffee from the banks of the Red Sea, orange from Corsica, marron glacés stems from Turin, whisky from Scotland, chestnuts from Szechuan to name a few.  Each chocolate provides not only the richness of chocolate, but also a whole new experience on every bite.

He also provides eccentric seasonal delights like beer chocolate for St. Patrick’s Day or chocolate sardine cans for April Fool’s Day, which is celebrated in France by attaching paper fish on the backs of unsuspecting victims.

Another highlight for visitors is Roger’s shop windows, which offer a glimpse of the chocolatier’s wackiness.  These seasonal displays are sculpted using forks, like giant chocolate polar bears for Christmas or a woman showing off her heart-shaped buttocks on Valentine’s Day.

Patrick Roger, the boutique, is located in five different points across Paris.  Check out www.patrickroger.com to know more about Roger’s chocolate creations.

12
Feb

François Pralus

by admin, in: France
François Pralus

A self-dubbed “aventurier du chocolat,” Francois Pralus is a highly-respected chocolatier who has earned the “Grand Prix d’Excellence International du Chocolat” and the “Grand Prix du Festival International du Chocolat.”  He has traveled all over the world to source out the finest cacao beans.  He personally imports about 18 varieties of cacao from Central and South America, Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, and the Pacific Islands.

A second-generation pastry maker, Pralus does not create ganache or truffles we usually expect from French chocolatiers.  Instead, he blends different cacao varieties and come up with a collection of chocolate bricks humorously called “chocolate pyramid.”  Each brick features a specific region where the cacao beans were sourced, such as the subtle Indonésie, which is made from 75% Criollo cacao; the aromatic Papouasie, with 75% Trinitario bean; and Le 100%, a slightly minty and fruity brick from 100% Criollo beans sourced from Madagascar.

The chocolate bars are made personally by Pralus himself, each variety created using his unique “tea-making” technique.  He mixes cacao with water, creating a tea-like concoction.  After sweetening the drink lightly and letting it settle, the tea’s taste provides Pralus an idea on what flavor that cacao bean would be made into.

With such precise production and eye-pleasing presentation, tourists and locals alike make it a point to grab Pralus’ chocolate pyramids and savor the world filled with chocolate.

Pralus’ shops are located in five cities across France:  Paris, Annecy, Charlieu, Renaison, and his base in Roanne.  Visit www.chocolats-pralus.com for more information.