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Treat Yourself With Gourmet Chocolates

You know the world is changing when the cognoscenti start to talk about gourmet chocolate in the same way other connoisseurs talk about wine. It used to be the norm that wine critics held sway using terms like gravel, blackberry, sweaty saddle and honey peach to describe a particular wine. These days a similar practice is being adopted by gourmet chocolate connoisseurs. There are top line producers of chocolates who are actively encouraging this trend by sponsoring chocolate tastings. At my local wine shop I have seen Shiraz filled chocolates at outrageous prices. The peculiar terminology or terroir that used to be the preserve of the wine industry is certainly changing and so are chocolate prices.

It will come as no surprise that some Italian chocolate manufacturers like Amadei, which makes the Porcelana and Chuao ranges of gourmet chocolates, are leading this push. Terroir is the terminology that describes the peculiar taste characteristics of a particular wine region. Prices can be as high as $100 a pound.

When prices go this high the comparison with wine is well and truly justified.

What if it’s Just Too Expensive?

Luckily there is a large range to choose from. You don’t need to go straight to the top. Also, it’s a matter of taste. Just because a chocolate is the most expensive does it really mean it is the best? Well it depends on what you like. Remember when a block of Cadbury plain milk chocolate was the standard? Now there are so many alternatives I guess the only way to see what you really like is to go ahead and try them all!

You could start with Valrhona, Scharffen Berger, and possibly small local producers. This is where it gets exciting. As this new breed of chocolatiers starts to grow, you may find a local one producing well priced high quality gourmet chocolates.

You can even try to make some yourself. Imagine bringing out your own specially developed chocolates at your next dinner party! You’ll need the best ingredients and maybe have to take a course but can you imagine a better way to spend a few hours. The rewards are out of this world!

You can find most of what you need online, and remember, tasting the products that are available to you can be a wonderful past-time. You will soon develop your own preferences and you can buy as much or as small as you want when testing new gourmet chocolates out. Soon you will be in chocolate heaven.

Michael is the owner of ChocolateMad.com Chocolate Lovers, the BEST site for all things chocolate. You will also find fantastic chocolate based gift thoughts at ChocolateMad.com ChocolateMad.com

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