Over the past few months, I have had the fun of sampling several offerings of some of the finest chocolate I’ve ever tasted. This is saying something, considering the cocoa obsession and snobbery from which I sprang. In its ongoing race to become the next West Village, Park Slope is now home to the charming Chocolate Room, a combined cafe and confectioner, which makes its own candies and carries an assortment of esoteric varietal chocolates from around the world. On Valentine’s Day, I received several bars of chocolate from this shop, including two by the Bonnat Chocolatier of Voiron, France. Hoo, boy, this is some good stuff. They offer eight varieties of bars, made from South American and African beans. The labels carry poetic descriptions of the subtle shadings of taste from one variety to the next, which I initially scoffed at. After tasting two side-by-side, however, I was convinced. Some are smoky, some are creamy, others are acidic, while still others are fruity. These are not for the faint of heart: 75% cocoa content is a LOT of chocolate, and not much sugar. However, for those who care about gourmet foods, these are well worth the investment of time and money.

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