TOP PHOTO: Edible chocolate box with bonbons from Charles Chocolates. SECOND PHOTO: Coco Puro’s chocolate-coated cacao beans. THIRD PHOTO: Ganache-filled bonbons from John & Kira’s. BOTTOM PHOTO: Calabacita figs filled with chocolate whiskey ganache from John & Kira’s.
We love putting together holiday gift lists, sharing our must-have favorites. The chocolate items here begin at $12. Items under $10 are on our Stocking Stuffers list, out later this week.
If you’re looking for kosher gifts, check out Li-Lac Chocolates, below.
Our favorite chocolate-covered nuts are from Charles Chocolates: Triple Chocolate Almonds, premium California almonds that are fresh-roasted, then coated in bittersweet and milk chocolates and dusted with cocoa powder. They’re also available in Mint Chocolate Almond and Triple Chocolate Hazelnut, 6.5 ounces for $12. Toffee Chocolate Macadamias are $15 for 6.3 ounces. An assortment of all four varieties is $46.
A memorable treat is the Edible Chocolate Box (top photo), filled with fleur de sel caramels, milk chocolate caramels and bittersweet peanut praliné butterflies. Seventeen ounces of chocolate, including the box, are $46.00.
Get yours at CharlesChocolates.com.
Kakawa Cocoa Beans (second photo) are a unique gift for the chocolate connoisseur: chocolate-covered cacao beans—the whole bean, not the nibs, which are the “seeds” of the bean.
The finest beans are roasted until crunchy, like coffee beans; then hand-enrobed in layers of white, milk and dark chocolate and dusted with cocoa powder. That’s five expressions of chocolate in one bite!
Kakawa is the Olmec word for cacao. The Olmecs were the first people to cultivate the cacao plant in Mesoamerica.
A 12-ounce bag is $28 at CocoaPuro.com.
Of all the wonderful choices at John & Kira’s, two are our favorites for holiday gifting:
The Winter Forest Collection (third photo) comprises three seasonal designs and bonbon flavors, all enrobed in a 62% Valrhona dark chocolate shell.
Snowcapped peak bonbons contain a crunchy hazelnut-almond praline center, crystalline snowflakes are filled with white chocolate mint ganache, and a starry night envelops vanilla-accented dark chocolate ganache.
Nine pieces in a handsome reusable box are $29.95 at JohnAndKiras.com.
Our perennial favorite are the Chocolate-Filled Figs With A Touch Of Whiskey (fourth photo). It’s become our annual treat to ourself, and truth be told, we buy two boxes (and have to restrain ourself from buying double that, and don’t share a single piece).
A treat for the refined palate, organic dried Calabacita figs are filled with a whiskey-infused Valrhona dark chocolate ganache; then hand-dipped in 62% dark chocolate and nestled in a handsome gift box.
Each bite becomes a treasured memory; and if you think we’re getting flowery here, just taste them! Get yours at JohnAndKiras.com. Twelve pieces are $38.50.
This French chocolate gift assortment contains a luscious mix of milk and dark chocolate squares filled with soft centers: caramels, chocolate fudge, French creams, hazelnut truffle squares, mocha, mousse, marzipan, and rum ganache. Inspired by European-style chocolates from the 1920s, we said “yum” out loud with every bite.
Twenty pieces in a handsome repurposable box, 8.5 ounces of chocolate are $28. Larger boxes—one pound, two pounds and three pounds—are also available. The line is certified kosher (dairy) by OU. Get them at Li-LacChocolates.com.
The venerable Parisian chocolatier, with outposts in New York City, has created something truly special: the Sweet and Savoury Collection. For the connoisseur, these surprising pairings of chocolate and vegetables are quite wonderful (but do not count toward your daily portions of veggies).
The flavors include: dark ganache with Guérande sea salt, dark ganache with hot red pepper, ganache with balsamic caramelized onions, hazelnut praliné with porcini mushrooms and praliné with black olives and olive oil. These combinations may sound strange to most people; but for the true connoisseur, they are treasures.
The Savoury Chocolate Collection can be enjoyed at any time of the day or night, but Master Chef Nicolas Cloiseau, who created the collection, enjoys it between the last course of dinner and dessert. Get yours at LaMaisonDuChocolat.us. There are two sizes, $24 and $36.