Saturday, January 23, 2010

Filipino Hot Chocolate

So I stayed over at a friend's house a couple of nights ago. He lives in the part of Queens that is essentially Long Island so rather than going home on the train at 3am I simply spent the night. And was happily surprised in the morning.

My friend's mom is wonderfully caring and made us a Filipino breakfast. We had eggs, rice and sausage and the best part was the hot chocolate. Mama Violago gets special chocolate wafers from a Filipino grocery store and uses this to make the hot chocolate with.

The chocolate is thick and grainy like the stone ground chocolate you can get in Mexico. It makes sense that Filipino hot chocolate would be like Mexican hot chocolate since they were both influenced by Spanish cusine. The hot chocolate was thick and Mama Violago suggested I add a lot of milk. I'm glad I got a chance to try some hot chocolate from another country.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Tea and Chocolate: La Maison Du Chocolat

So my family was in town this past week and they know I'm a chocoloholic. Usually I find yummy places to take my sister to eat. We were walking through Rockefeller Center and decided that we must have a cup of tea! So we walked past NBC studios and around the corner to find, tucked away on a side street a La Maison Du Chocolat!

My sister got creative and got a hot chocolate with a shot of espresso. (Really really rich and dark) I got jasmine tea and a small little truffle that they paired with it. The truffle was milk chocolate with a praline crunch. The floral notes of the chocolate and the floral notes of the tea blended well together. The chocolate gave off a lemon essence that was perfect for the tea.

La Maison also has chocolate tastings for around $70 dollars. As far as tastings go, this is a steal. For the chocolate you get to eat and learn about it's really worth it...I plan on going to one in the near future and reporting back. For now, go and have a spot of tea and chocolate. The Maison has great parings and you won't be disappointed.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

cultural chocolate connection

Here's another great blog about chocolate. These guys are based out of London so they have a good perspective on international chocolate. This article is a tasting of the Milo bar which, like Milky Way and other chocolates taste a bit different all over the world. I've never had a Milo bar but it looks good!

Chocoblog reviews the Milo Bar

Saturday, January 9, 2010

The Mars Bar mystery

I was in the airport coming home from Jamaica. After waiting in a long line at the airport and getting there two hours too early, I got hungry and wanted a snack. Of course I went for something chocolaty. I saw a bar I had never tried before called a Bounty bar. I bit in thinking that this might be something really new with chocolate and a coconut filling... but no it was exactly like a Mounds bar. At first I thought Bounty was just a different name for the Mounds bar in countries other than the it turns out the two candies are not even made by the same company. Bounty is by Mars and is only sold outside of the US market, and Mounds are made by Hershey. But you could have had me fooled.

Which leads me to the slightly confusing difference between the European Mars bar and the US Mars Bar and Milky Way bars. Ok so according to Wikipedia the original Mars bar was a European invention, designed to be a sweeter version of the American Milky Way bar. Ok so far so good. Yet somewhere along the line we get the American Mars bar (discontinued in 2002!) Which is slightly different than the European one. And apparently what goes for a Milky Way here in the States is called a 3 Musketeer over there.

I'm not even sure I was able to decipher all or any of that, but needless to say the chocolate world is full of things that get lost in the cross-cultural translation.