Monday, August 2, 2010

Chocoholic on the Road, Chicago: Part 1 (The Grand Haul)

When I go on travel and have spare time, I try to check out chocolate that I don’t normally have access to. This trip to Chicago was no exception – while there is a fine Ghirardelli store off Michigan Avenue, I can get everything there at the Friendship Heights World Market. I instead focused on chocolates that are not available in DC. Here’s a picture of the overall haul:

I first hit Blommer (, which I could smell from at least three blocks away, since the chocolate is processed on site. In the shop, one can purchase almost anything covered in chocolate, as well as bulk chocolate chunks and chips of various types (white, semisweet, milk, bittersweet). In the interest of keeping my luggage under weight limits, I settled on chocolate-covered caramel popcorn and a bar of pure milk chocolate.

Next up was Vosges. Some of their bars are available at several shops in DC, but their boutiques also offer truffles and other creations. My final total here was nearly $100, but I came away with some amazing chocolate, including:

Matcha Bar (Japanese matcha green tea, 45% deep milk chocolate)

Naga Bar (sweet Indian curry powder, coconut flakes, 45% deep milk chocolate)

Black Pearl Bar (ginger, wasabi, black sesame seeds, 55% dark chocolate)

Barcelona Bar (hickory smoked almonds, sea salt, 45% deep milk chocolate)

Woolloomooloo Bar (roasted & salted macadamia nuts, Indonesian coconut, hemp seeds, 45% deep milk chocolate

Creole Bar (espresso, New Orleans style chicory, 70% Sao Thome bittersweet chocolate, cocoa nibs

Oaxaca Bar (Oaxacan guajillo y pasilla chillies, 75% Tanzanian bittersweet chocolate

Red Fire Bar (Mexican ancho y chipotle chillies, Ceylon cinnamon, 55% dark chocolate)

Gianduja Bar (almonds, caramelized hazelnuts, deep milk chocolate)

Organic Peanut Butter Bar (organic peanut butter, pink Himalayan salt, Maldon sea salt, 45% deep milk chocolate)

Habana Bar (Ecuadorian plantain chips, 45% deep milk chocolate)

Aztec collection truffles (including dark chocolate with vanilla bean, milk chocolate with vanilla bean, caramel with milk chocolate, and cinnamon and chili with dark chocolate)

Exotic caramels (including bee pollen and honey, maple syrup and walnut, dulce de leche and cashew, and blood orange and hibiscus)

Caramel toffee

After that, I was off to an old favorite: Teuscher, which I know from my days living in Boston. While there, I got several bars and some truffles:

Lemon Chocolate Bar

Chocolate 55 Bar

Mint Chocolate Bar

Milk Chocolate Praline Bar

Milk Chocolate Bar

Champagne Truffles (4 pieces)

16-piece assorted truffles, pralines, and giandujas (including lemon, raspberry, caramel, butter crunch, and almond varieties)

Obviously, this will all take a while to eat and review. The bars last longer than the truffles, so I’ll have to start with the truffles and work my way to the bars and other creations. Can’t wait!


Post a Comment