Friday, February 08, 2013

The biggest chocolate holiday of the year is almost upon on us

Valentine's Day is almost here and I know people are fretting about this and that. Whether it is what to buy that special someone or that they are all alone. Who came up with the idea to place so much pressure upon us for one day all about love? Was it the greeting card companies trying to make an extra buck?

Various newspapers, magazine's and online publications will write articles about where to dine, what to do and of course which chocolate to buy. You can pick up a Consumer's Report and read about the over the top expensive chocolates (I am starting to think that they just republish the same article once a year, as it never really changes).

I enjoy chocolate. And over the years my tastes for it have become more refined, I can't really eat a Hershey's bar anymore. I have my go to chocolates and then I branch out occasionally to try new ones.

I bought a sampler box from Oh! Chocolate which is a local company here in Seattle. I think the company's tag line is something like a new take on classics. When I try a new company I always have high hopes because getting chocolate right can be hard. Other then a nut covered in dark chocolate I have not been impressed with any of the ones I have tried out of my $15.00 box. I had my husband try a chocolate topped with colored peppercorns. His lasting impression was that he couldn't get the peppery taste out of his mouth. If you are going to charge $1.50 a chocolate you'd better do better then that.

I often have great luck with Seattle Chocolates. I have to admit when I first tried their products I wasn't impressed but over the last few years they have refined their products and are producing some great things. The mint truffles in the above picture have actually become so good that they have knocked Frangos off my list. Which is so sad. Frangos for many of us who grew up in Seattle were synonymous with Fredrick and Nelson and Christmas time. They were wonderful little bites of chocolate to help you survive any Christmas calamity that might arise. Now over the years the product has deteriorated into a massively overly produced confection.

Which brings me along to Theo Chocolate. They are a small company based just over in Fremont. They have a great mission, to use fair trade chocolate. Sure they have some odd flavor combinations but their heart is in the right place. Sometimes I have a hit or miss with their bars that benefit Jane Goodall's institute (I have had one or two bars that tasted like cleaned dirt.) I recently picked up their drinking chocolate and have been blown away with how delicious it is.

Whether you are year round chocolate eater or just looking for a Valentine's day treat do not let yourself fall into the trap of despair. Celebrate your love for life, friends and the family you have made (whether you are actually related or not) and don't get hung up on all that other crap being dished out. Buy whatever chocolate or champagne you want and have fun. Life is far too short to spend moping around and feeling sorry for yourself.

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