September 9, 2014
A great new talent is unearthed. Very definitely one to watch!
One of the greatest joys of writing about food, and judging and consulting on chocolate, is witnessing passion and creativity. I recently came back from Paris, where I spent a day in the inner sanctum of La Maison du Chocolat, one to one with Head Chef Nicolas Cloiseau, tasting recipes, interviewing him, and gaining stunning insight into that globally successful fine chocolate company. Nicolas Cloiseau is a big deal, it was a privilege. (More of...Read more »
September 2, 2014
An important date for your diary and chance to indulge. Get mingling with the finest chocolate makers at this not-to-be-missed event.
Do you like chocolate? I know, stupid question, but there is the odd freak out there that doesn’t. Although what they would be doing reading my articles is a little uncertain. So, assuming you do like chocolate, love chocolate, worship chocolate, or even make it your life’s work, you MUST be sure to have the 17th-19th of October blocked out in your diary for The Chocolate Show 2014 at London’s Olympia. [caption id="attachment_2377" align="alignnone" width="506"] Scrumptious...Read more »
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 »
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 »