Originally posted by Walter:
I think the whole idea is to find out what you really enjoy and try not buy things just because your peers/social status /age etc says you should. Pepole get so involved in their carreer trying to please other people that they find no time to find out what they actually like and what they are doing out of a sense of propriety/ fashion...
Too True. Find out, explore, experience.... don't just take on belief what a magazine says.
check out www.chocolates-elrey.com
for descriptions. I've been having some of this stuff the last couple days, it is absolutely heavenly.
Drizz, thanks for the website address. I've had El Rey, and I personally don't think it is as good as several others here in Europe. Have you tried Porcelena from Marcolini or Amedei? Originally posted by MCA:
...They pretty much mention all the Venezuelan cacao bean (Criollo) varieties. What they don't mention is that the Chuao variety is generally regarded as the best. Because of its very limited production and preciousness, very few producers use it. Of the makers mentioned, only Casalindolci and Chuao Chocolatier would qualify as small artisanal producers with very limited production and retail locations. Richart, Marcolini and El Rey have larger operations, the former 2 marketed as luxury brands with fancy boutiques all over the world. Don't get me wrong, they're among the best makers in the world. Of these only Richart uses Chuao beans on some of their chocolates. Sharffen Berger is readily available, but not that big of a company (Very nice place to tour if you are in the Berkeley area) and their limited editions compete very well with the "boutique" brands.
As for the "Chuao" bean's exclusivity, there are also other's that is just as 'rare' or even 'rarer' (one intrepid Italian is on a quest to find the perfect
bean in Madagascar.). I would rate the production of Porcelana at least as 'exclusive' as the Chuao, and how many producers do you know use it? Other readily available chocolatiers who use the chuao include Amedei, Bonnet, etc.... It is not that difficult to find. What I define as an artiginale manufacturer is not along the lines of Casalindolci. I was thinking of very small maker, with one store, no retail outlets except their store.... and if you have travelled around you would know that there are quite a few in Europe, and they make an absolutely exquisite treat. There is one in Lucca, whose chocolate/pistacho creation beggars the imagination.