Archive for August, 2013

Escazú Goat’s Milk Single Origin Carenero Venezeula

August 19th, 2013 by Rosa

After my last experience with Escazú, I had to have more. Fortunately, there’s a great coffeeshop right by my gym that sells some of their line, so I nabbed this Escazuú bar with a mouthful of a moniker: Goat’s Milk Single Origin Carenero Venezuela.

Like the last bar, this was divided into 24 rectangles. This one easily and sharply snapped along its scores and melted with a matte mouthfeel.

The chocolate started off lightly sweet, then developed edgy caramel notes while also intensifying with a fruity, cherry sweetness.

The finish was absolutely incredible. It was slightly tangy and almost savory, I think because of the goat’s milk, but it didn’t have any of the unctuous funkiness that can sometimes accompany goat cheese.

That finish lingered for quite some time after the chocolate had melted away. I couldn’t get enough of this bar, as evidenced by the fact that it’s half gone. An OMG.


Category: chocolate, OMG, review, single origin | Comments Off on Escazú Goat’s Milk Single Origin Carenero Venezeula

Sour Punch Punchies

August 16th, 2013 by Rosa

These Sour Punch Punchies were being heartily promoted at Sweets and Snacks, and I snagged a free sample to review for y’all. The wrapper called them “soft, chewy, and sour candy”, and they came in lemon, strawberry, tangerine, blue raspberry, and green apple.

Each Punchie had a fun little face printed on it. They were like spherical jelly beans with an extra thick sugar shell. That grainy shell cracked easily, revealing a chewy jelly center.

Lemon (yellow) was bright and tart with a zesty overtone reminiscent of Lemonheads. It finished with a sour lemon flavor.

Strawberry (red) was extremely floral and surprisingly tasty (I usually don’t like strawberry candies). Unfortunately, it finished with a heavy plasticky note.

Tangerine (orange) had a tartness that intensified as I chewed it, and it developed a great tanginess as well. There was just a hint of plasticky finish, but it was minimal.

Blue raspberry (blue) was about what you’d expect from blue raspberry, a flavor not found in nature. It was extremely sweet and fruity without any seediness, and again, that plasticky finish.

Finally, green apple brought a decent hit of tartness to start and a strongly sweet fake apple flavor. The plasticky notes were pretty apparent here as well, as they are in the green apple Sour Punch Straws.

I found these to be a fun sugar rush, despite the sometimes plasticky notes.  I definitely prefer them to Sour Punch Straws, and they pack more flavor than most Jelly Beans. I’m torn between an O and an OM – I’m feeling generous, so OM.

Cybele also covered them on her blog, and gave them 7/10.

Category: jelly candy, OM, review, sour | Comments Off on Sour Punch Punchies

Restaurant “Chocolate Program”

August 15th, 2013 by Rosa

Did you even know “Chocolate Programs” were a thing restaurants could have? Maybe it’s only something the Michelin-starred ones do.

Medera in California has one, and Serious Eats got the scoop, plus some seriously drool-worthy truffle photos.

Category: news | Comments Off on Restaurant “Chocolate Program”

Frozen S’Mores

August 13th, 2013 by Rosa

Has the cronut craze died down at all? As delicious as the lovely treats sound, I’d much rather have a frozen s’more. Check out Serious Eats’s description, and you tell me if your mouth is watering as much as mine is right now:

“The Frozen S’More ($7) starts with a special marshmallow, which is made by substituting honey for some of the sugar… The marshmallow goo is piped into a stainless steel mold, then, squares of housemade vanilla custard that have been rolled in chocolate feuilletine (chocolate wafer cookie bits) are dropped in and entombed under more marshmallow. The molds are then put in the freezer overnight.”

After all that, they blowtorch is to order. How sweet is that?

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Hokkaido Pumpkin Chocolate

August 12th, 2013 by Rosa

I inherited the remains of this box of Hokkaido Pumpkin Chocolate from Emma, who got them from a friend. I was amused that pumpkin-headed mascot appears to be named Yukky.

The pumpkin chocolates were all individually wrapped with a little window through which you could see the pumpkin shaped candies within. Some were jack-o-lantern shaped, while others were just pumpkins.

The pumpkins were made of orange-hued white chocolate sprinkled with bits of crisp rice-like objects. Those bits gave the chocolate toasted puffed wheat notes that were immediately present from first bite. They eventually gave way to a grittiness when the chocolate was gone, from their husks perhaps.

The white chocolate had faint notes of roasted autumn squash. It was just lightly sweet and mostly vegetal in flavor. I missed the spices that usually come with pumpkin desserts in the U.S.

While I appreciated the beauty of the treat, the flavor wasn’t my thing. While I usually complain that U.S. sweets are too sweet, this Japanese one wasn’t sweet enough. An O.

Category: Asian (China, Japan, and Korea), chocolate, O, review | Comments Off on Hokkaido Pumpkin Chocolate

Escazú Chipotle Chile & Vanilla

August 9th, 2013 by Rosa

Escazú Chocolates is another chocolatier that’s practically in my backyard. How did I not know that there were so many local chocolate makers right here in the triangle?

I’d seen them before at Whole Foods and the coffee shop by my gym, but I’d never picked them up because I already have a sizeable chocolate backlog. Fortunately, a friend decided to thank me for some pet-sitting by giving me this Chipotle Chile & Vanilla bar.

The 74% cacao bar was segmented into 24 rectangles. The chocolate broke easily but without a true snap. Its melt was thick for a dark chocolate, velvety in texture but not tongue-coatingly thick like milk chocolate.

The dark chocolate had a fruity flavor with strong, plummy raisin and fig notes that lingered in the finish. The chipotle sting melted into a tingling burn that also lingered on the tongue and in the back of my throat.

I loved the complex intensity of this bar and am now eager to try the rest of their line. An OM.

Category: chocolate, OM, review | Comments Off on Escazú Chipotle Chile & Vanilla

Hedonist Ice Cream Shop

August 8th, 2013 by Rosa

I have sung the praises of Hedonist Artisan Chocolates on this blog a multitude of times. I was recently in Rochester for a wedding, so of course I had to drop in for a visit. I got some Chocolate-Covered Salted Caramels, and I stopped by their new (to me) ice cream store.

It was so good that we went back the second day that I was in town too. The first day, I got the Goat Cheese Whiskey Fig (sweet with a slightly funky goat cheese undertone), while my boyfriend got the Salted Caramel (sweet and salty) covered in a decadent chocolate sauce.

The second day, we both got the Chocolate Sorbet in waffle cones. It was the richest sorbet I’ve ever had. I have no idea how they made it so intensely chocolatey and delicious, yet dairy free. At because it was Hedonist, I was able to get some chopped bacon chocolate truffles on the side.

A ZOMG! like whoa, and a must visit if you’re ever in Rochester.

Category: news, review | Comments Off on Hedonist Ice Cream Shop

M&M’s Chocolate Bar

August 7th, 2013 by Rosa

Mars was working hard to promote their new M&M‘s Chocolate Bar at Sweets and Snacks this May. They kept a never-ending supply of them in the press room, and I snagged one for review (plus a few more as gifts; free candy is the only payment I get for all this blogging).

The bar is basically a milk chocolate bar embedded with mini M&M’s. M&M’s had tried selling something like it back in 2004 as the M-Azing bar, but it never really caught on then. I guess they think the market is ready now?

The chocolate was scored into 8 pieces and imprinted with the same image of Red being swallowed by melted chocolate that’s on the wrapper. I personally find it a bit morbid and not nearly as cute as M&M’s pretzel effort.

The milk chocolate of the bar tasted just like the milk chocolate center of a plain M&M: dusky and thick with a sour tinge that burned my throat. Plenty of mini M&M’s were distributed throughout the bar and revealed themselves by staying whole when the bar was broken apart.

The mini M&M’s crunchy little shells were a nice addition to break up the texture. I also appreciated the nice splash of color that they brought.

I enjoy milk chocolate M&M’s because you get the fun of melted or crunching away the chocolate shell, but I don’t find it to be high enough quality to prefer to eat it in giant chunks like in this bar. An O.

Category: chocolate, M&M's, Mars, O, review | 3 Comments »

Videri Chocolates – still on the to do list

August 6th, 2013 by Rosa

Last week, Emma and I went to the Videri Chocolate Factory to cross it off our to do list  and write about it for the blog – or at least we tried to. We had a pretty good barbecue dinner across the street, thinking that we had all the time in the world because they closed at 10.

In fact, as you can see from the above photo, they closed at 9. We got there at 9:15! Alas, we shall have to try again. Continue to stay tuned.

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Chuao Popcorn Pop

August 5th, 2013 by Rosa

I got this Chuao Popcorn Pop mini chocolate bar as a free sample at their booth at Sweets and Snacks. I mentioned to the chef that I really liked their Firecracker Pod, and he handed me this, saying that I would love it.

He was right! It was described as being “inspired by that familiar flavor you love, with a surprising POP in milk chocolate.”

It started off with a salty hit of toasted popcorn flavor and crunch, then gave way to a popping sensation as the embedding popping candy exploded in my mouth, all while being set off by a smooth milk chocolate.

According to the ingredients list, the popcorn flavor came from corn chips and puffed amaranth. The corn chips gave the proper corny flavor, while the amaranth gave the textural feel of the fluffy white portions of popcorn.

It was fun how the crunchy grit of the “popcorn” seemed to turn into the popping sensations. It was a whimsical, well conceived, and well executed treat. An OMG.


Category: chocolate, OMG, review | Comments Off on Chuao Popcorn Pop