My dad is the kind of chocoholic who roams around the house from room to room looking for some. He comes home at the end of the day and just needs his fix. Growing up at least twice a week I would be visited by him. He'd stand in my doorway with this guilty little kid look on his face and say, "you got any chocolate lying around?" If he asked my brother, he'd get lucky and the answer would be yes. My brother loves chocolate, but he's like my mom and likes to savor it. One little bit at a time, and a whole candy bar might last him two weeks. Me on the other hand, I always said no. I love to savor my candy, but in the moment. That stuff never lasts long once I get my hands on it. I just can't say no to a good thing.
My dad is not the kind of chocoholic who appreciates really interesting good chocolate. One year, for Easter, my mom bought him this gorgeous bunny made by Christopher Norman, who is more like an artist than a chocolatiere. He just popped the whole thing in his mouth and ate it. "Yeah, that's pretty good," was his response. And my mom was so pissed she never bought him anything from there again.
I, on the other hand, would have taken a picture of it, blogged about how good it was, and then devoured it while saying in between each bite how it was soooooo good. (Nick is really sick of me saying that every time I have a food I really like.) And because I'm a good wife (and do feel guilty when I eat a lot of crap) I also would have shared it with Nick who would have enjoyed it just as much, but would not have been as vocal about it.
So if you're like Nick and I and really love specialty chocolates (think truffles with flavors like milk lavender, dark caramel orange, cabernet, passion fruit, and rosemary) that are as colorful as a bouquet of flowers, here are a few of my favorite stores to shop at (all of which you can conveniently order online from).
The downside to these places is that they aren't cheap. But they are all so rich and delicious. A box of 6 truffles split between two people is more than enough for a decadent dessert that won't leave you feeling overstuffed and super guilty.
Probably my all time favorite, located in South Barrington, Illinois but available in Whole Foods and other gourmet shops. I may try really hard to convince the next person who throws a party for me to get the favors from here. Anna Shea's colors are so beautiful, it's almost too difficult to eat.
A shop in the Cow Hollow section of San Francisco which features many chocolate makers from all over the globe. Truffles, chocolate bars, and much more.
Located in the financial district of New York City (and also available in Whole Foods and all over), chocolate is treated like an art form. Immaculately wrapped boxes and abstract paintings in bar form that remind you of Jackson Pollack almost make you want to frame each piece.