Conscious chocolate consumption
My intention for documenting my journey in chocolate is to build a connection between consumers and makers of fine chocolate. I want to be the catalyst to raise awareness, share my experience and support the community behind every delicious piece of chocolate I get to enjoy. I focus on companies with heart and soul; caring for how their businesses impact our daily lives. There is innovation in chocolate making within the United State. Chocolate makers are working every day to produce exciting, high quality, chocolate in a sustainable, and socially driven way.
This is my life in chocolate: honoring the origin, the farmers, makers, and consumers.
I invite you to raise your awareness, discover the art, craft, and science of chocolate.
Lately I have had a slight obsession with Patric Chocolate. Have you tried it? The wonderful chocolate maker Alan makes amazing bars, especially delicious inclusion bars. Inclusion bars have something mixed inside the chocolate so they are more than a solid bar of chocolate (which can still be delicious!). The Triple Ginger is the most surprising one that I find so delicious. The Mint Crunch is also phenomenal. Besides bars, I also enjoy bon bons (handmade truffles, bon bons, “candy bars”) and recently tried Kate Wieser Chocolates from Dallas Texas. Her work is beautiful and full of flavor. I only tasted the holiday candy bar and passion fruit bar but they were both delicious. I also ordered her Carl the Snowman hot chocolate as a Christmas gift for my husband. It is adorable and I can’t wait to try it. I will post about that as soon as my husband and I enjoy it.
While shopping for chocolate you might have come across bars that say “100% Cacao” on them.
What does that mean? There is NO sugar. That bar is a combination of cacao nibs and cocoa butter or ground up cacao beans without the cocoa butter separated. Some say this is not even chocolate. By definition chocolate is comprised of traditionally 3 ingredients- cocoa mass, cocoa butter, and sugar. So when you take out the sugar, you are left with what is called chocolate “liquor”. Regardless, I dare you to try it to see what cacao can taste like in its purest forms. Honestly? You may dislike it. You might think it tastes bitter, acidic, and nothing you would normally enjoy. But compare it to a candy bar you like and compare the taste. Candy bars have very little “chocolate”…they are mostly sugar, milk, and preservatives so you’re missing out on the actual chocolate flavor.
I recommend this as an exercise in checking your palate. Now you can do this with a dark chocolate bar that is at least 70% cocoa content but why not go as extreme as it can get with a 100%? You could even do a range: candy-bar, 70%, 80% & 100%.
Have fun tasting and exploring chocolate. It’s supposed to be fun!
Tell me about your experience in the comments below. I would love to hear what you think about it.
2016 was an eventful year for me personally but especially when it comes to chocolate.
I didn’t keep a chocolate log (good idea for 2017!), but I’m pretty confident that I bought the most chocolate ever in 2016. Which also means I ate the most in one year. HA!
Highlights of this year include:
- Our yummy chocolate wedding favors by Chocolat Modern
- Traveling to Seattle for the NW Chocolate Festival and Unconference
- All the amazing women I’ve met through Instagram and at the NW Chocolate Festival
- Enjoyed a wonderful chocolate class at ICE taught by the amazing Pastry Chef Michael Laiskonis
- Attended the Valhrona Ecole Brooklyn Hot Chocolate Festival Event
- All the chocolate books I bought and am slowly reading
If 2017 brings as much chocolate into my life like 2016 did then I am in for a sweet year. Yay!
Do you love chocolate as much as I do? Last summer I left the BIG Apple with my husband for Orlando Florida. Since then, I have gone through extreme chocolate access withdrawal. I was so spoiled living in New York, I had a number of chocolate shops and brands all within arms reach of my apartment in Brooklyn. Chocolate making classes, tastings, pairings, shops, SOOO many options. There are other way to find chocolate of course; the internet is a wonderful solution for that. But its no fun to enjoy chocolate by yourself. Don’t get me wrong, that doesn’t stop me from doing it but I would much rather share with others and talk about it.
So, are you a fan of chocolate? Are you curious about who is making it?
Leave a comment below telling me what chocolate you want to try or learn more about. I’ll figure out how we can all gather and taste chocolate together!