Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Of Pods and Pants

One of the best things about Candy Expo was the people. One of my favorites was Master Chef Michael Antonorsi of Chuao Chocolatier. He made me a cup of the most fantastic hot chocolate I have ever had and actually took the time to sit down and talk with me while I drank it! You may think this is no big deal, but these guys were there to talk with buyers, not random bloggers. But he was the best!!

Here's their website:

The company's mission is:
To arouse your senses with unusual, unexpected and delicious chocolate confections. Venezuelan born Master Chef and Chocolatier Michael Antonorsi lives and breathes the creative culinary process. I saw that - he is so excited and passionate about food and chocolate - it was awesome! (I have a secret crush on him.)

The samples they had at Candy Expo were their ChocoPods:

These are wafer thin chocolates shaped like cacao pods. Some are filled and some are solid. Each has only 60 calories!! They gave me one of each flavor - there are 8. I'll review 4 tonight (hey, I can only eat so much and keep my girlish figure!).

Picante - 60% dark chocolate and spicy Cabernet caramel. This had a liquid caramel filling and I didn't think I would like it - I usually don't like spicy chocolate. But this one was great - delicious. Subtle spiciness balanced by the sweetness of the chocolate and the Cabernet.

Chinita Nibs - 60% dark chocolate caramelized cacao nibs and nutmeg. This one is a solid. I loved the texture of the nibs - nice and crunchy and the nutmeg really comes through. Very unique taste. I usually think nibs are too bitter, but this balance was perfect. For some the nutmeg might be too strong, but I really enjoyed getting to taste it.

Spicy Maya - 60% dark chocolate, pasilla chile, cayenne pepper and cinnamon. Another solid. Love the cinnamon and the chocolate - the peppers give it heat, but are not overpowering. They kick in a bit after you eat the Pod. This might be my favorite of all the spicy chocolate combos. It's the cinnamon I like so much.

Candela - 60% dark chocolate and spicy macadamia nut. Okay - I am in love with this one!!! It's nutty, but not too nutty. The interior is a crunchy praline filling - YUM!!! I think what makes these so great is the balance of flavors. There is a hint of spice, but not too much. And the flavors kind of hit you in waves. Delish!!

These are fun to eat because they are like chocolate cookies, but with very complicated ingredients and flavors. I think they are perfect when you just want a really great taste of chocolate, but don't want to go crazy. I mean, we all have to keep fitting into our jeans, right?

Well, all of us except John Daly - he's got glue.


Endangered Species Chocolate said...

Wow, you seem to truly love chocolate, especially Chuao Chocolatier's. Have you tried Endangered Species Chocolate? I don't know if we can make you some hot chocolate like Chef Michael, but you might like our chocolate, too! :) Have a great day & keep on eating chocolate!


Denise Ryan said...

Hi ESC! Thanks for stopping by! I haven't tried yours yet. I'll add it to the list!