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Pete
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My wife has been craving good chocolate truffles for some time now, and I was hoping to surprise her with some for her birthday. Does anybody have any recommendations other than Godiva?

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[The following posts have been split into separate threads:

Chocolaterie Wanders (Chocolaterie_Wanders)
The Cacao Tree (TheCacaoTree)
Artisan Confections (Andelman)
Artfully Chocolate (goldenticket)
A. Kirchmayr (TedE)

[Can we please support these folks? Thanks! Rocks.]

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I forgot the name of the place but there is a Belgian chocolate shop up on Wisconsin - upper G-town.  It's on the right hand side if you're driving up from M Street, a block and 1/2 above Marvelous Market.  Very good.

Leonidas

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I forgot the name of the place but there is a Belgian chocolate shop up on Wisconsin - upper G-town.  It's on the right hand side if you're driving up from M Street, a block and 1/2 above Marvelous Market.  Very good.

I believe you are thinking of Les Delices de Isabel, which sells Leonidas truffles and filled chocolates, which are delivered fresh from Belgium. The address is 1531 Wisconsin. I love that place!

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On my last trip to New York I brought back a box of Vosges Chocolate for a friend. He made the mistake of leaving it at my place by accident and never got them back.

For my birthday this year I recieved a delectable box of truffels from Buckinghamilton and her fiance Diner Boy, but you'd have to ask her where she got them :lol:

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My very pregnant wife has asked for nothing more for Valentine's Day than the opportunity to gorge herself on some chocolate (Actually, she couldn't care less about Valentine's Day. I think she's just craving chocolate, and Valentine's Day is a good excuse to ask for it. But I digress).

Anybody know of any great chocolatiers operating in the DC metro area? If not, anybody have any online recommendations? I used to live up in Cambridge, Mass., so I'm thinking of ordering from Burdick's which I always thought was quite good.

Thanks. . .

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My very pregnant wife has asked for nothing more for Valentine's Day than the opportunity to gorge herself on some chocolate (Actually, she couldn't care less about Valentine's Day.  I think she's just craving chocolate, and Valentine's Day is a good excuse to ask for it.  But I digress). 

Anybody know of any great chocolatiers operating in the DC metro area?  If not, anybody have any online recommendations?  I used to live up in Cambridge, Mass., so I'm thinking of ordering from Burdick's which I always thought was quite good.

Thanks. . .

This is all you need to know. Click.

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I second the Kingsbury recommendation! I may be partial since I live just a few blocks away, but Rob does great things with truffles - unusual flavor combinations and garnishes. Popcorn balls are excellent and so are the chocolate-dipped dried fruits.

Might want to get in early for Valentine's Day - they were closed for days at a time right before Christmas filling orders. I was in the other day and it looks like they've responded to the increased volume - the place was busting with pre-packaged items and a whole new area for packaging materials (boxes, ribbons, etc) had been created since my last visit.

The caramels are melt in your mouth divine - and also come in interesting flavors- I just tried the orange clove caramel and it was wonderful!

I am also a fan of Leonidas from a semester spent in Brussels - there's nothing quite like that white chocolate hazelnut buttercream .....mmmmmmmmm!

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Crap, now I have to find a Balducci's near me.

These are damn good chocolates. Last year I brought home a box as a gift for a friend. He made the mistake of leaving them at my apartment and he never got to finish the box :lol:

FYI-The wine shop attached to The Evening Star carries Vosges chocolate bars.

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Shameless self-promotion here...I would like to put our chocolates into the mix....

Please check out our website for more info (www.artisanconfections.com)

If anyone has any questions, fire away.....

I can vouch for the quality of Jason's excellent chocolates. The box we picked up at the Del Ray Arts Festival caused my wife to swoon. If I were capable of swooning, I would have as well. In any case, they are fantastic.

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Chocolate Chocolate, a very tiny family owned shop at the corner of L & Connecticut in the Washington Square building, has Neuhaus truffles. They also have lots of other things like milk or dark chocolate covered graham crackers or pretzels. It's down the block from the Chocolate Moose, so you can compare and contrast Leonidas and Neuhaus.

The Curious Grape in Shirlington has Valrhona single plantation choclate bars.

Dean & DeLuca also has a nice assortment of chocolates, but pretty expensive.

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The bon bon review in the food section of the Post today seemed right on. Congratulations,Jason! Your stuff looked awesome!

Kingsbury chocolate IS disappointing. The caramels are great but the texture of the creams is awful and the products look sloppy.The popcornballs are the best thing I have ever had but do not a chocolatier make.

People will buy anything as long as it is pink,chocolate or shrimp. I have spoken.

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The bon bon  review in the food section of the Post today seemed right on. Congratulations,Jason! Your stuff looked awesome!

  Kingsbury chocolate IS disappointing. The caramels are great but the texture of the creams is awful and the products look sloppy.The popcornballs are the best thing I have ever had but do not a chocolatier make.

People will buy anything as long as it is pink,chocolate or shrimp. I have spoken.

Look sloppy, really? They are not the painted/molded style of the others, but that does not make them sloppy. What do you expect from handmade truffles? I also have to disagree about the texture of the creams, but different strokes for different folks I guess.

I look forward to trying the various ones mentioned above (must plan to visit once V-Day has passed).

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Look sloppy, really? They are not the painted/molded style of the others, but that does not make them sloppy. What do you expect from handmade truffles? I also have to disagree about the texture of the creams, but different strokes for different folks I guess.

I look forward to trying the various ones mentioned above (must plan to visit once V-Day has passed).

The cream fillings have been frozen.

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There is a chocolatier working in Mt. Pleasant who makes "adult" truffles.  This is a home-based business.  The website is :  www.delicioustruffles.com

These look really interesting.

What is so "adult" about them? They appear to be just like all the others. Am I missing something?

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What is so "adult" about them?  They appear to be just like all the others.  Am I missing something?

The addition of chili or ginger, the bittersweet ones with unsweetened fillings, etc. These are not the sort of things to appeal to kids or people who like really sweet chocolate (like Hershey's). Some of these appear to be designed to go with wine, etc. That's what I meant.
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My very pregnant wife has asked for nothing more for Valentine's Day than the opportunity to gorge herself on some chocolate (Actually, she couldn't care less about Valentine's Day.  I think she's just craving chocolate, and Valentine's Day is a good excuse to ask for it.  But I digress). 

Anybody know of any great chocolatiers operating in the DC metro area?  If not, anybody have any online recommendations?  I used to live up in Cambridge, Mass., so I'm thinking of ordering from Burdick's which I always thought was quite good.

Thanks. . .

There's an excellent Web site that offers in-depth reviews of chocolate purveyors: http://edp.org/chocolat.htm

Based on that and other glowing reviews, I ordered a Valentine's box from Burdick's for Twinsmommy. Twinsdaddy will of course have to help her eat the chocolates while they are fresh. :lol:

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This is the best chocolate I have ever had, in Brugges, Belgium: The Chocolate Line. Their website:

http://www.thechocolateline.com/ Scroll around for photos: the chef-solely dedicated to making chocolate-always wears his whites and chefs hat. Unfortunately they will not ship here. However, they have several particularly interesting photos on their website. Celebrating the "Chocolate Festival" is this photo: on their homepage, near the top of it, click on "evenemenjen." It will speak for itself. It also speaks for their version of sublime bliss.

This is the best chocolate that I have ever had that you can have shipped here:

http://www.spruengli.ch/

Sprungli is only sold in their stores in Switzerland but you can buy online and they WILL ship here. They also have a store in the Zurich airport.

Edited by Joe H
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Tasted over the past several months:

Jacques Torres typifies a good boutique chocolatier these days. Most of the pieces are actually somewhat dull-looking, and the flavors are good but somewhat conservative, but I think the one runaway winner of his is the wicked hot chocolate powder, which is spiced with chilis and studded with chips. Fresh from his boutique in Brooklyn on a cold windy day, a cup of this theobroma is smooth and drinks with an almost criminal richness.

Even more experimental in the spice department is Vosges, whose pieces generally fall into three categories: their standard pieces (including the curry+coconut Naga truffle that put them on the map), their Mexican chocolate pieces (the cinnamon compels you), and their rotating regional selection, which is currently focused on Australian ingredients like wattle pollen. Unafraid to use a liberal hand with the spices, Vosges are some of my favorites. Also worth noting - the best caramel toffee ever. It's unreasonably expensive though, so I'd suggest visiting a Vosges store and snacking liberally at the sample display <_<

Digressing from fine chocolates for just a moment, in the novel-wrapper department, the Theobroma chocolate company of Sitka, Alaska, sells a US Coast Guard-themed milk chocolate bar as a fundraiser for their local USCG auxiliary. They also mold a few novelty shapes, particularly a Tlingit blanket pattern and typical Alaskan fish - salmon and halibut.

Still a big fan of the ephemere sauce from Seattle's Dilettante chocolatier...I bring a bottle back every time I visit. Warm the plastic bottle for just a few seconds in the microwave to liquefy it, shake vigorously, and squeeze over ice cream.

Local favorite Kingsbury show a lot of handmade character, but didn't particularly stand out to me. Sorry, guys.

Finally, big props to Jason Andelman's superb Artisan Confections, which are some of the most beautiful pieces I have seen anywhere. His sugar-printed designs are marvelously whimsical (love the audio signal on the mint...but shouldn't it be an EKG?) and really pop out, even if some of the flavor combos weren't winners with the +1. But the truffles, and especially the metallic-lustered ones, are knock-outs. I'm heading back to Periwinkle for more.

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I bought one of the Vosges chocolate bars at Surfa's in L.A. when I was out there-- the one with chipotle and ancho chile and cinnamon. OMG I am so sorry I didn't buy more of them there. They were $2 a bar cheaper than the other place I saw them--Le Sanctuaire, a super-trendy cookware-gourmet food-dinnerware shop in Ocean Park. The chocolate was beautifully smooth with wonderful, complex chocolate-ness and then you got the cinnamon edge, and finally the chiles kicked in after the chocolate slid down your throat, and you felt it at the back of your mouth. Something very special. What's great is that a small piece can completely satisfy the chocolate craving. You choco-holics out there know what I mean.

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I bought one of the Vosges chocolate bars at Surfa's in L.A. when I was out there-- the one with chipotle and ancho chile and cinnamon. OMG I am so sorry I didn't buy more of them there.

this sounds like something i must have. i have never tried their chocolate before, and the vosges web site is selling a 3.3 oz. fire bar for $6. while i'm at it, i think i probably should also order an easter hatbox, although the $77 price-tag is a bit on the think-twice side. still, they say it contains two exotic bunnies!

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this sounds like something i must have. i have never tried their chocolate before, and the vosges web site is selling a 3.3 oz. fire bar for $6.

Go for it. I paid close to $6 at a discount store, and they were $8 a bar at a fancy shop. The other flavors sounded intriguing, as well. I feel like a total yutz for not buying a slew of them to bring home with me.

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s.

Even more experimental in the spice department is Vosges, whose pieces generally fall into three categories: their standard pieces (including the curry+coconut Naga truffle that put them on the map), their Mexican chocolate pieces (the cinnamon compels you), and their rotating regional selection, which is currently focused on Australian ingredients like wattle pollen.  Unafraid to use a liberal hand with the spices, Vosges are some of my favorites.  Also worth noting - the best caramel toffee ever.  It's unreasonably expensive though, so I'd suggest visiting a Vosges store and snacking liberally at the sample display :)

I discovered Vosges in Chicago on a random visit to a random mall. I had no idea I would stumble upon a true gem in the world of Chocolate all those years ago. Except Ironstomach is right, her chocolates are unreasonably expensive. At the Soho store they had an amazing number of samples out for us to taste. I purchased some bars to bring back to DC as gifts. The bars are fabulous ways to discover Vosges if you aren't a truffle person (I don't love truffles) Vosges Bars

Well to my surprise, I have discovered that Vosges bars are available outside of their stores at high end places like Star Provisions in Atlanta StarProvisions and the Curious Grape in Shirlington CuriousGrape. To my greater surprise, the bars are less expensive at outside purveyors than at the Vosges stores.

So all this to say, yesterday I bought the Barcelona Bar which is comprised ofHickory smoked almonds, fleur de sel gray sea salt, and dark milk chocolate. I have tasted the Red Fire, Creole and Oaxca bar. I have never devoured one the way I have the Barcelona Bar. The salt plays really well with the chocolate.

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