Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Zoe's Chocolate Company: Almonds and Black Daphne Truffles

While that chocolate moustache on a stick from Zoe’s Chocolate Company over in Frederick, MD is a pretty cool looking (and tasting) Father’s Day creation, I was more interested in the more creative creations. Especially anything involving nuts. Yes. Nuts. Like these chocolate-covered, cocoa-dusted almonds.

There was a faint nutty aroma, and the couverture work was very smooth and aesthetically pleasing. Inviting me to pop one in my mouth.

When I did, I was first greeted by an intensely earthy flavor from the cocoa powder, which quickly dissolved to give way to a buttery dark chocolate couverture with a buttery melt. At the beginning of the melt, flavors of vanilla and bananas were evident; as the flavor built, caramel and coffee notes emerged. The almonds (literally) at the center of this creation were nicely roasted, flavorful, and crunchy. The entire piece blends together perfectly, and I found these to be on par with the chocolate covered nuts available from the highly-regarded Recchiuti in San Francisco.

Bonus: Frederick, MD is much closer to DC than San Francisco. Easier to get these for you dad when you don’t have to fly across the country and back.

Now onto something even more complex: the Black Daphne Chocolates.

Wait for it…

The red-tinted white chocolate exterior hints at the Mavrodaphne wine infused in the ganache. This wine is from the Peloponnese in Greece, which I thought was a nice nod to Zoe’s Greek heritage.

Now, you likely know that I don’t usually like boozy chocolates, so this truffle was going to have to work for my affections. Work hard. I cautiously took a whiff, expecting an overwhelming alcohol scent, but instead found a subtle fruity aroma. Intrigued, I moved along.

The white chocolate couverture is sweet and creamy, and the soft, thin shell is fairly well matched to the density of the ganache to make it easy to enjoy this chocolate in small nibbles. The ganache itself is buttery in feel, but less dense than most buttery ganaches, and has a fruity flavor that has caramel undertones with a subtle wine aftertaste. The white chocolate combines with these flavors to add a rich sweet flavor that makes a well-balanced chocolate that isn’t overwhelmingly boozy at all, and instead hints at a sweet, subtle wine.

Your dad will like this. He just will. And if he doesn’t, you can send the rest of the box to me. I’ll give it a good home.

Have you ever had a wine-flavored chocolate? What did you think?


  1. I loove chocolate covered almonds!!!!! Yum! :D

  2. Oof that Black Daphne chocolate is exquisite. Its gorgeous, and it sounds even tastier than it looks. I may have to detour there on my way down to Roanoke!

  3. There's a comapny in Australia that does bars of shiraz, merlot, and pinot noir infused- chocolates - I've tried them all years ago, but need to blog them, I think :P

  4. That wine truffle looks amazing. I love prosecco truffles readily available here in Germany and of course, champagne ones...

  5. I'd generally prefer other flavors in place of wine in my chocolate... I'd rather drink wine with my regular dark chocolate:-)