What do fig, hazelnut, pepper and champagne have in common?
They are all happy residents inside of rich, perfectly formed, chocolates. I found them all with their decor and etchings, in a row, in a new chocolate shop that just opened its doors on Orcas Island: Kathleen Taylor Chocolates. I was visiting the island, happily cycling through the humble yet striking East Sound, when we fell upon this quaint little shop. Suffice it to say, we went back a second time, to try even more of their chocolates. Well, that isn't entirely true. My eldest son went back for seconds of the very same treat: their fruit tart. The fruit tart includes a tart shell, a lining of chocolate and a topping of glazed fruit. My son was in heaven; he informed me it was the best dessert he has ever had [in his entire life]. Now, instead of dwelling on the fact that he didn't say this about one of my own desserts (but what about the creme brulee I make you: you love that!), I instead lingered happily on the thought that a memory materialized before my very eyes. How can a 12 year old boy forget 'the best dessert I ever ate' when on a quaint island in the throws of a family vacation? We went back twice for that tart!
I love innovations in the realm of chocolate. People who push the flavor profiles farther and farther and are able to achieve both pleasure and surprise for my palate. I tried a pink peppermint chocolate: real mint infused chocolate with pink peppercorns to send spice notes through the mint flavor. And it worked.
What unusual flavors have you experienced with chocolate?