Photo by: Tasty Image
There’s nothing better than a good friend, except a good friend with CHOCOLATE
~ Linda Grayson, “The Pickwick Papers”
I’m a mother with not enough free time, a chocolate lover, a woman who loves to entertain…any idea what’s coming?
A Chocolate Tasting!
Well, the Chocolate Tasting already happened, but now I want to write about it. ‘Cause it was fun, delicious and awesome enough that I want to do it again.
It started with the invites. I used Evite to send out the chocolate tasting invites to my friend. Easy to keep track how many people you can expect. Hate the “Maybe” option though. Wish you could turn it off. For an evening where knowing the number of people is necessary to prepare, the “maybe” RSVP is a pain in the butt.
Then came the shopping. I’m good at that. Whole Foods and Cost Plus World Market were my destinations. I cannot claim that I know much about chocolate. I’m no connoisseur, but having said that, I am from The Netherlands and I lived in Belgium. I have certain standards and those standards don’t include Hershey’s. Yep, I’m a snob that way.
I knew I wanted to get a variety of dark chocolates for the chocolate tasting, yet honestly, the dark is not my fav. Milk is more my sort of thing, however, I love to try new things, so dark I got as well as Red Velvet Milk, regular milk and white chocolate to end with. When hosting a chocolate tasting, you always want to make sure that you start with the darker, chocolates with the higher cocoa content, working your way down to the milk and lighter chocolate, containing less cocoa and more sugar.
Each type of chocolate was presented on separate plates.
Photo by: Delishhh
The guests all had note cards in front of them on which they could make notes for each chocolate regarding Appearance, Aroma, Texture, Flavor & Finish. Each chocolate was numbered and after each piece we tasted, we compared notes, surprised that the ones we loved others did not care for too much.
Remember I said one starts with the darker chocolate at a chocolate tasting? We did:
Lesson learned: you really don’t want to exceed the 80% cocoa when you do a chocolate tasting. It’s a “chocolate tasting”. Not a “cocoa tasting”. Thought I’d mention that. Though there were a few people who liked it, most of us were a bit thrown by it’s overpowering “cocoa sensation”. (I thought I put that very politely, didn’t I?)
Of course we had to get a few flavored chocolates.
Though it was hard to guess that pomegranate was the secret ingredient when we tasted it, the Pomegranate Dark Chocolate from Cost Plus World Market was intriguing and overall liked. Of course I had to get the Chili and Lime infused chocolate. Awesome layer of flavor after flavor after flavor. First chocolate, then a hint of tartness, then…spice (read: heat). Did I mention that the drink of the evening was Prosecco? Perfect companion for a chocolate tasting. Water works fine too, but it’s not as fun .
Following the flavored darks, came the milk. I didn’t realize they were as sweet as they were until I tasted them after the darks, yet they’re still my favorite.
You just can’t go wrong with Godiva.
We finished the chocolate tasting with 2 whites.
Photo by: igourmet
One with Madagascar Vanilla Bean and one with strawberries. Both delish, but definitely on the sweeter side of the spectrum.
At the end of the evening, everyone left with a little chocolate tasting favor: little cellophane pouches with a few pieces of the left over chocolates. (The ones that were left over after I had counted out the pieces we needed for the chocolate tasting.) With that, I gave the guests a print out of all the chocolates we had tasted. The numbers on the print out corresponded with the numbers on their note cards, allowing them to see which chocolates were the ones they liked and where they could buy them.
Chocolate Tasting: Done. Goal achieved. All of us friends got to catch up, we laughed a lot, enjoyed some bubbles and chocolate. Doesn’t get much better than that for the busy mom.
Until next time,
Savor food, savor family, savor life.
- Marieke, aka HRH Mommy
Share Your Thoughts:
New tasting-get-together-ideas are brewing, but I would love to hear from you, my readers, what sort of tasting you think would be fun (and possibly “different”).