Saturday, February 27, 2010

Salvation in Reading, MA

At times it feels like there is nothing near my office. When we moved from our downtown Boston office, I not only lost the quick walk to work ...but also my ability to just duck out for some treats.

I'm elated to report that I've found a hidden jewel in Reading! Meet the Chocolate Truffle. A google search lead me to this lovely chocolate shop when a coworker asked if I knew of any spots she could find cookies. I found instead chocolate high heel shoes!

On my way home from work on Friday, I stopped in to see the shoes in person and was treated to a sample of a mint pyramid. The shop woman's favorite. A triangle of dark chocolate tipped with white chocolate is filled with a thick mint center and caped with crushed candy cane.

Floating in a mint and chocolate daze I was dizzied further by the hand rolled chocolate truffles in amazing traditional flavors (caramel, mint and apricot) and unique spins (Sam Adams, chili and bacon). The store manufactures all of its products at a factory in Swampscott.

And then as is usually the case I found the shoes... Large enough to be filled with truffles, the chocolate-molded pump is flirty with polka dots in seasonal flavors. Men aren't left out and the shoe section includes a Wing tip dress shoe.

Shoes aren't the only unique chocolate pieces at the Chocolate truffle the shop serves up chicken wings and pizza. Milk chocolate wings are filled with peanut butter and served with marshmallow dipping sauce. The wings are a perfect appetizer to the shop's pizzas. Instead of pepperoni or cheese, pretzels, M&Ms and white chocolate drizzle flavors the extra large slices.

The chocolate truffle is not just a shop with quirky gifts, but its signature piece, the chocolate brioche is elegant and makes a perfect bowl for more pieces of chocolate. The brioche wrapped in cellophane is so beautiful, that the shop has been highlighted in the "The Chocolate Guide", a collection of local chocolatiers and boutiques.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

New DOVE Spring Catalog

The Punxsutawney Phil may have cursed up with more six weeks of winter, but the spring/summer catalog for Dove Chocolate Discoveries has been released. Check out what's new for spring below. Contact me if you are interested in ordering or hosting a party.

Hugs and kisses

Valentine's day is behind us now. I'm not so much pro-Valentine's day as I am pro-50% off candy the day after Valentine's day.

It is not too late to scour the shelves at Target (insert French accent) or Walgreens. I found some wonderful bargains on hershey kisses and stumbled happily onto raspberry hugs.

In an ode to V-day, the hugs are wrapped in flirty pink and white striped foil and tied off with the iconic ribbon. A layer of white chocolate hugs the candy's milk chocolate core and is striped with raspberry flavor. The smell of raspberry is as delightful as the fruity flavor that melts with the white chocolate. The raspberry is a little artificial, but what do you expect?
These are also a little sweeter than the usual hugs, but Valentine's day is all about bathing your teeth in sugar isn't it?

Thursday, February 11, 2010

San Diego Sweets

While on a recent trip to San Diego, CA I made a pit stop at the city's Seaport Village on West Harbor Drive. Their motto "Everything under the sun" means that you will find little tourist and kitsch shops to find souvenirs and tchotchke for all of your friends.

After taking in the view from the boardwalk, I ducked into the Crazy Shirts hut to find a gift for the BF. For more than 45 years, the Crazy Shirts brand has been selling not only funny T-shirts, but shirts dyed with unusual coloring. How about a beer-dyed shirt, or a chili pepper long-sleeve? More importantly… I found a series of shirts colored with CHOCOLATE!

As the shirt itself boasts, this shirt is perfect for the chocoholics out their…of course I bought myself one. While the shirt does not smell like a chocolate bar, it does have a lovely milk chocolate tone and is screen printed with sweets spelling out my own letter A "Chocoholic". I’m wondering if it is inappropriate to wear this at the gym.

With a beer shirt for the boy and a chocolate shirt for myself, I window-shopped the bath, hot sauce and pet shops until finding the Seaport Fudge Factory.

Instead of slabs of fudge, the Fudge Factory serves up logs of fudge in familiar flavors like rocky road. In addition to fudge, the factory’s glass cases showcased giant rice crispy treats, monster chocolate covered apples and at the top of my favorite candy list…chocolate covered cherries. It does not matter which brand, just give me a maraschino cherry enrobed in chocolate and we are BFFS.

At the fudge factory, you not only get a chocolate covered cherry…but you get the cherry bomb! A maraschino cherry is suffocated by a quarter of an inch of fudge and then dipped into a shell of chocolate. The combination of fudge and chocolate produces and egg shape and leave just the tip of the stem to hint at the inside core.

These bombs were so thick that it took me a couple of passes to finish and left chocolate and cherry syrup all over my fingers. Perhaps this was a dirty bomb?

Monday, February 8, 2010

....and we're back

My apologies for the posting hiatus... there have been lots of things going on.
The holidays quickly swept me off my feet and off to Ohio I went. The New England Winter has led me to hibernate a bit. And as quickly as I became I tour guide, I decided that the company wasn't operating in a way that I had hoped and I've left.

Don't fret my little substitution for the walking chocolate supply, I recently attended a "chocolate party" and found a new venture for my sweet tooth thanks to a little hospitality from Mary Anne.

While G-calendar stalking C, I noticed she was unavailable for a movie because she had already booked a chocolate party in her calendar. I immediately called her and invited myself to her mom's for the night.

Operating similarly to a Tastefully Simple or Tupperware party, the Dove Chocolate Discoveries "chocolatier" unpacked her boxes and dazzled us with description of her catalogue. Jen "the chocolate lady" spread her chocolate sauces and chocolate covered fruits and nuts across the table and encouraged us to dip and dig in.

With chocolate in my belly I began to think that I could be "the chocolate lady" too!
And so it has begun. I am now an official Dove Chocolate Discoveries Chocolatier.

If you are local and interested in hosting a party let me know and I can bring my own box of chocolate-covered treats.