August 26, 2014
As the summer holidays draw to a close, here is a taste of something wonderful found on travels of mine, that I can happily still get at home.
It is a truism that Italy is all about family, family and food. At the Tuscan workshops and showroom of TortaPistocchi, the burgeoning chocolate empire of Claudio Pistocchi, this could not be more the case. During the late morning visit I paid with Italian chocolate expert Monica Meschini, we met not only Claudio and his sister but also his wife, two year old daughter, parents, cousin and a close friend. This was a normal day...Read more »
August 12, 2014
Humour me for straying from chocolate once again. L'Enclume was an experience too special to keep to myself.
L'Enclume, Simon Rogan's two Michelin starred restaurant in the village of Cartmel, is hardly on the beaten track. It occupies the old blacksmith's (enclume is French for anvil) in the heart of a Cumbrian village carved out of characteristic grey stone, nestled in amongst the hills of the Lake District. But while it may not be a place you are likely to wander past, it is absolutely worth the journey, consider it a pilgrimage. I...Read more »
July 29, 2014
As Afternoon Tea Week approaches I thought I would bring you a gem of a tea from my favourite cafe.
In the UK afternoon tea has a unique place in our hearts, and the elaborate meal that has developed to fill the unscalable gap between lunch and supper can be a very special thing indeed. Sadly, because of the worldwide fame of our afternoon tea ritual there are a plethora of formulaic, badly executed excuses for it in hotel dining rooms and village tea shops throughout the nation. It isn't that we want innovation, at...Read more »
July 15, 2014
A world class chef, whose chocolate is well worth a pilgrimage.
Just over a year ago I was lucky enough to eat at Midsummer House, Daniel Clifford’s two Michelin starred restaurant on the edge of Midsummer Common in Cambridge. I am currently doing research for a series of articles for Four Magazine, including one on how exciting, informed and adept chefs are getting with chocolate. Looking at the notes of my glorious experience in the hands of one of the UK’s finest chefs it seemed like...Read more »
July 1, 2014
A day of absolute indulgence with one of Italy's preeminent pastry and chocolate stars.
Some pastry chefs excel at one thing, maybe two if their stars are aligned, that is something of the nature of a specialist. Marco Vacchieri is a master of many. My visit to his shop in Torino was probably the most indulgent moment in a week of indulgent moments. I say moment, but I really mean few hours, as there was no way to do justice to tasting all he has to offer unless I...Read more »
June 17, 2014
A lunch to remember.
Forgive me, there is VERY little chocolate in today’s post, all but none. I want to write about a meal, a culinary masterpiece, and hope that you will all give me license to go off piste from time to time. I am assuming that my readers, like me, will be excited and interested in food other than chocolate, at least occasionally. And I am very privileged, as a food writer, to be meeting and working...Read more »
June 3, 2014
A year after the tragic loss of Mott Green I wanted to revisit his words and his wonderful chocolate.
It is a year since the untimely death of Mott Green, founder of The Grenada Chocolate Company, visionary chocolate maker, inventor, creator and indomitable and inspiring example to us all. He has been much missed. This evening I will be at The Academy of Chocolate, attending an event in his memory. His dear friends and partners in chocolate adventure Chantal Coady and James Booth will be present to guide us in remembering an exceptional man, and...Read more »
May 20, 2014
Port and chocolate maestros came together for an evening of indulgent tastes.
Last thursday evening saw the introduction to a new partnership between Paul A Young Fine Chocolates and Churchill's Port. It was held at Churchill's Port House in London's Greek Street, a pop up venue whose purpose is to introduce London to the range of Churchill's Port, by the glass or as tasting flights, in an informal setting with carefully paired tapas available alongside. What Churchill's have done with Paul is create an additional tasting flight...Read more »
I am a food writer, with special interest in, and huge enthusiasm for, chocolate! This blog is where I get to tell you about all the wonderful tastes, events, and people I come across in the world of chocolate.Find out more »
Desert Island Chocolate
I ask the great and the good which chocolate they couldn’t possibly live without…
‘Definitely some cacao beans because I love eating them. I’ll take a marble slab and some tools with me to be able to make chocolate on the island. And I think I would take some of my lemon chocolates and an 88% Tenor.’
Chocolate maker Zartpralinen
“Well obviously it would be Green & Blacks, probably Maya Gold. Every time I go back to it I think it is genius.”
Founder – Green & Blacks
“I love the single origin, the Madifirolo, the one from Cocoa Barry. I love it for its fruity, passion fruit and citrus flavour.”
Chocolate Master, Bake Off Creme Winner
Things I'm loving
This new tasting pack combines four of the most interesting and delicious bars around.
A punchy bar combines spice and smoke with a fruity A. Morin chocolate.
This is rich yet delicate, dark chocolate, walnut and orange heaven from Germany’s Clement Chococult.
- More Things I'm loving »