April 4th, 2009 by Rosa
Archive for April, 2009
April 3rd, 2009 by Rosa
We used to have a Cold Stone creamery by campus, but it recently went out of business. Fortunately, Jelly Belly has a new-ish line of Cold Stone creamery flavored jelly beans, dubbed their ice cream parlor mix. Unfortunately, the bag came with a coupon for ice cream that I can’t use because there’s no longer a Cold Stone within walking distance.
These come in five flavors named after Cold Stone ice creams:
Chocolate Devotion – chocolate ice cream, chocolate chips, brownie and fudge. This bean has a dark cocoa edge to it that’s quite reminiscent of brownies. It’s super chocolate-y, which I appreciate, but I’m not a big fan of the chocolate with the jelly bean texture.
Our Strawberry Blonde: strawberry ice cream, graham cracker pie crust, strawberries, caramel and whipped topping. The strawberry flavor is quite bright. You can almost taste the seeds. In fact, the seedy finish makes me think more raspberry than strawberry. I don’t get the caramel and graham cracker, though.
Birthday Cake Remix – cake batter ice cream, rainbow sprinkles, brownie and fudge. The bean is festive looking – pale cream with rainbow speckles. It tastes like vanilla cake, like the kind that comes out of a box of mix, with a slight hint of chocolate to the finish. That hint is so slight that I wonder if I’m imagining it because of the flavor description.
Mint Mint Chocolate Chocolate Chip – mint ice cream, chocolate chips, brownie and fudge. It tastes like mint chocolate chip ice cream with a refreshing finish. Like the chocolate, however, it’s just not a flavor I enjoy in jelly bean form.
Apple Pie A La Cold Stone – French vanilla ice cream, cinnamon, graham cracker pie crust, apple pie filling and caramel. Strong caramel and canned apple pie filling flavors make this thing too sweet. I’m not a fan.
Overall, the flavors are interesting, but they’re not for me. And they don’t mix well. I chased a mint with a chocolate and got a wave of bitter. Blech! An O from me, but an A for effort.
Finally a personal note – I’m playing in my last Yale Concert Band concert tonight, April 3, 7:30, in Woolsey Hall. We’re playing the Rite of Spring and the Artie Shaw Clarinet Concerto (with an amazing Yale School of Music professor of clarineting soloist), so it should be a good one – a great way to finish off my YCB career. Come listen if you happen to live near New Haven/Yale!
April 2nd, 2009 by Rosa
April 1st, 2009 by Rosa
I was in Rochester, NY last week and came across a delightful little chocolate shop called Hedonist Artisan Chocolates. While there I struck up a nice conversation with one their chocolate makers (perhaps the proprietor?) and partook of their generous free samples of just-made rolled champagne truffles and some bits of chocolate bark. The great samples convinced me to buy two of their ever-changing selection of handmade truffles: molasses ginger and peanut butter cayenne.
The molasses ginger (left) was a square of molasses ginger flavored ganache covered in dark Valhrona and topped with a tiny piece of candied ginger. It was fresh and tasted amazing. The ganache was creamy but not greasy and had a distinct fresh ginger flavor without the less pleasant bite that real ginger has. I didn’t get any direct molasses notes, but there’s a mellow sweetness that permeates throughout. The little dab of candied ginger was a wonderful touch that again, brought ginger flavor without any bitter notes. All this was nicely juxtaposed against the snappy shell of good quality dark couverture.
Peanut butter cayenne was topped with a little half peanut. The filling in this was stiffer and slightly gritty. It initially starts with a roasty fresh nuttiness before giving way to a lingering cayenne burn. The heat is more intense than other chili chocolates, so it may not be for the faint of heart, but I loved it.
Both truffles were great, if not exactly cheap at $2 a bite. Still, they get a ZOMG! for their high quality and wonderful flavors. There were other interesting sounding flavors that I didn’t try (like raspberry wasabi and lapsang souchong), so I’m sure that I’ll revisit Hedonist Chocolates again and again once I move to Rochester.
That’s right – I’m moving to Rochester! I get my BA in psychology/neuroscience at the end of May, and sometime during the summer, I’m starting a two-year stint as a research assistant/lab manager at the University of Rochester. The decision to move there wasn’t an easy one to make, especially since my other option was a fully funded, generously stipended year in a Master’s program at Cambridge University (back in England, with British accents and Cadbury and Haribo…), but Rochester made me a great offer full of great opportunity. Besides, it’s close to Canada, so I’ll still get to explore an international candy scene while there!