Tag Archives: dark chocolate

Two for Tuesday: Sea Salt Dark Chocolate

I love dark chocolate and one of my favorites is sea salt dark chocolate.  In Raleigh, NC, there are two chocolate makers, Escazu Artisan Chocolates in Mordecai on Blount Street and Videri Chocolate Factory on West Davie Street in the Warehouse District.  Escazu’s sea salt dark chocolate bar is 65% cocoa; Videri’s, 60%.

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I decided to do a taste test involving three other people.  We tasted both of these (they blind, me knowing) and it was 50/50 split of which is best.  Two tasters thought Videri was too bitter and preferred the flavor of Escazu’s chocolate.  (Escazu’s chocolate also has vanilla in it.)  Two tasters thought Escazu’s was too salty while the other two thought Videri’s was too salty.  Go figure.  The taste and texture of both chocolate bars is different.  For a taste test yourself, visit both shops.  For $5, you can tour Videri’s factory.

Delish is Delish

With all the buzz surrounding the Celebrity Apprentice ice cream created by Trace Adkins and Penn Jillette for the Good & Delish brand at Walgreens, magic swirtle and maple macadamia mash-up, I thought I’d try some other Good & Delish products.  I got them at Duane Reade in Manhattan, but you can find them at Walgreens too.  (If you are looking for the Celebrity Apprentice ice ceams, I saw them this week at Duane Reade.)  Good & Delish products are not your average store brand products.  They are creative treats like these milk chocolate cornflake clusters and this tropical fruit white chocolate bar.

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These were delish. The cornflake clusters are kind of like chocolate with crispy rice in it, only the cornflakes are a bit crunchier and almost burst a little like Pop Rocks. I really liked these. The white chocolate had a nice burst of fruit.

I also tried these caramel apple caramels, sea salt caramel granola chips, cinnamon apple chips and dark chocolate with crispy rice puffs.  Guess what? Delish!  My favorite is the sea salt caramel granola chips.  They are addictive.  I also like the dark chocolate with crispy rice.  I’m thinking they would go well on top of vanilla ice cream.

Delish products
My exploration of Good & Delish didn’t stop there. I tried these red velvet caramels and milk chocolate and marshmallow smores. Have to admit, red velvets were not favorites of mine and the smores were just OK.

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These blackberry sorbet chocolate bars more than made up for the lackluster former two treats. OMG, these are more than delish.

chocolate sorbet bars

Finally, if you were a fan of raspberry cream Peek Freans, then you’ll like Good & Delish raspberry cream cookies.  I also love the cinnamon granola chips.

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So I definitely recommend the Good & Delish products, especially the milk chocolate cornflake clusters, sea salt caramel and cinnamon granola chips, blackberry sorbet bars dipped in chocolate, tropical white chocolate bar and dark Belgian chocolate thins with crispy rice.  Yum!  I mean, delish!

Two for Tuesday: Chocolate

So I’m still on my white chocolate kick.  I made these cherry white chocolate pudding cookies from Chocolate Chocolate and More.  I brought a batch of these to work, and they quickly disappeared!

cherry white chocolate cookies

I also made these Nama chocolates because I’m a big fan of Royce’ Chocolate.  When I saw Nami’s recipe for Nama chocolate, I wanted to try making my own.  I didn’t use liqueur, so these are pure dark chocolate-y goodness!  If you take them out of the refrigerator, I would let them sit 5-10 minutes before enjoying.  At this stage, they are very smooth truffles, so just let the goodness melt on your tongue.  If you leave them out a half hour or more, they are super soft and totally different chocolate experience.  I like it both ways and will definitely be making these whenever I need a chocolate fix.

chocolate

Royce’ Chocolates

NAMA white chocolate

Before I had Royce’ Chocolate, I didn’t like white chocolate.  In fact, I hated it.  But after tasting the melting white chocolate cream that is Royce’s NAMA white chocolate, I love it.  This is white chocolate at its very best, and here at Hunting for the Very Best, that is what we look for!

I first read about Royce’ Chocolate on Asian food blogs.  Without a trip to Asia planned any time soon, I thought I’d never get to try this elusive creamy goodness I’d heard about.  Lo and behold, on a cold, winter day, I passed the doorway of a narrow shop on Madison Avenue, Royce’.  Indeed, this was the chocolate I’d been longing to try.  The small shop showcases chocolates along its sleek white-lit walls.  The company’s famous NAMA chocolates are in a refrigerated case on one side.  The NAMA chocolates are a mix of chocolate and fresh cream and come with or without liqueur.  The cream comes from a dairy farm in Hokkaido, in Northeastern Japan.  In addition to the NAMA chocolates, there are chocolate bars, chocolate-covered cookies, chocolate-covered popcorn, chocolate wafers, chocolate truffles and much more.

Royce' Chocolate

Royce’ Chocolate

The friendly staff greeted me and gave me samples of almost every product.  Besides the NAMA chocolates, Royce’s claim to fame is chocolate-dipped potato chips.  Yes, I was skeptical, how could this taste good?  But after sampling the milk chocolate, caramel-flavored white chocolate and cheese-flavored white chocolate (yes, cheese-flavored white chocolate) varieties, I am a convert.  In fact, here I go again extoling the white chocolate at Royce’, but these are out of this world good.  The only problem I see is that the box is too small!

cheese-flavored white chocolate

cheese-flavored white chocolate

Royce’ Chocolate opened in 1983 and began producing NAMA chocolates in 1995.  While I was visiting Royce’, I met co-owner Ken Romaniszyn, who is also the owner of Lady M Confections, the popular cake bakery on the Upper East Side.  I also met Maiko Yamazaki, daughter of Royce’s founder, Yasuhiro Yamazaki.  In addition to the Madison Avenue store, Royce’ is opening a store on Bleecker Street in the West Village.

ROYCE’ Madison Shop, 509 Madison Avenue, New York, New York 10022, 646-590-0650.