Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Caffarel Gianduja and a bit of hot stuff

The Box is the source of chocolate for my review today. We're putting aside Lidl and Lindt for the moment, and revisiting Salon du Cacao. Proprietor Michael Behrens helped us select a box full of various chocolates for tasting, and I've been waiting for the right moment to enjoy my Caffarel chocolates.

Caffarel is an Italian company which has been making chocolates for almost 200 years. Clearly in the gourmet class, perhaps defining the class itself.

The first piece up today is their signature piece. First created in 1852, Caffarel blended cocoa with hazelnuts to create the classic Gianduiotto. Not just everyday hazelnuts, mind you, but real Piedmonte hazelnuts, probably the best in the world. Wrapped in a sturdy golden foil, it's a pleasure to eat, letting it melt quickly on your tongue. Odd fact: they didn't get a name until much later, when Gianduja named them during the Carnival of 1865.

New in their collection is an adaptation of the famous Gianduiotto, with a chili pepper kick. Dark chocolate and just the perfect amount of chili, giving you a sense of the heat a beautiful Italian summer can provide.

Just for fun, here's a surprise Caffarel piece: a praline with delicious bits of perfectly toasted hazelnut. I'm not going into too much detail here, because I believe it may have only been available last Easter, and you have no hope of finding it now. Sorry. You really missed something wonderful.

1: Better than sex
2: Little bites of heaven
3: Share with your best friend
4: Will do in a pinch
5: Halloween candy

Where to buy:
USA: stores supplied by Daprano
Italy: Hey, you need a vacation, anyway. Why not Italy? Caffarel in Turin

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