It wasn't too long ago that I sort of spread my wings and started eating chocolate that was "artisan" or "unusual". When my bestest friends opened their candy store Rock Candy in NE Baltimore, I had the great fortune of having access to amazing chocolate while simultaneously being off dairy and almonds completely. The only thing I had left was bittersweet and dark chocolate with various ingredients thrown in for flavor or for an incredible tasting experience...or gummi worms. I grew to love chocolate in the manner in which chocolate was intended to be loved...for its flavor and complexity, for its bitterness, for the process by which it is turned into an accessible bar and for the way it makes you feel. It pulled me away from the milk-laden Hershey, Mars and even Lindt (a respectable, and creamy rich, Swiss brand) chocolate brands to which I had grown accustomed. Since then, I would say I'm an adventurous chocolate eater. I was delighted to see that there's a new "chocumentary" out called In Search of the Heart of Chocolate. It seems to have a rather wacky cast of characters - everything from chocovangelists to everyday enthusiasts and store owners - all in an effort to discover where the filmmaker's love of chocolate began.
Now that I can have both dairy and almonds, I still gravitate to the "fancier" bars I tried while visiting my friends store. Vosges Chocolate, known for their Mo's Bacon Bar, can take you on a wild ride of flavor and texture, Chuao Chocolatier creates bars that are refined, elegant and perfectly tempered, Olive & Sinclair is one of my new artisan favorites (their Mexican-style Cinnamon & Chili will knock your socks off!), and I am also a fan of the Green & Black's ginger bar. I will also never, ever turn down Ritter Sport in any of its various iterations...except marzipan!
Do you have a favorite chocolate bar? Perhaps something out of the ordinary? Leave a message in the comments and let me know!
Just a note...once the weather cools off and chocolate is more safely shipped, look out for a giveaway here at Oh Meaghan with my all time favorite chocolate bars!