[youtube:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AbRA0NiQDxk]The chocolate I wantThe Granada Chocolate Company is a must visit. If you can’t make the trip check out the above or just buy the chocolate.This is a producer that is better than fairtrade and claims to own the smallest chocolate factory in the world. It is owned by a cooperative which also processes the cocoa into chocolate rather than only grow it.Fairtrade producers simply sell at a higher price with the profits often going to large landowners. Apparently, the Granada Chocolate Company could sell more chocolate than it makes and is expanding its factory. And I’d like to go there and taste the chocolate, which sadly isn’t available in Australia.
I’m writing this as part of the Food Destinations events this month being hosted by Emily at Chocolate in Context.
The chocolate I knew
I’ve always chomped into giant blocks of dark chocolate, the ones contained at least 50 per cent cocoa solids. But my love of chocolate hit another level when I discovered Chantal Cody’s Rococo in London’s Kings Road in the late 1980s. It was here I discovered the joys of Valrhona, particularly the 64 per cent cocoa solid Manjari variety.So began my regular Sunday pilgrimage on the No.11 bus (an old Routemaster at the time) to the Kings Road to this cornucopia.
The chocolate I know
Possibly the most diverse choice of chocolate in Melbourne is at Prahran Market. If you must, you can buy from a couple of organic stalls Green & Black’s chocolate. But remember G&B is a company that is now owned by Cadbury but does sell still some Fairtrade chocolate.
The Essential Ingredient sells my favourite plain chocolate for eating, 70 per cent Kennedy & Wilson chocolate, designed by a winemaker and one of my favourites to by by the kilo. This chocolate is divided into five 200g blocks, which are easy to break apart by hand. When K&W isn’t available, I can always able to buy Callebaut or Lindt. But these are really better for cooking that eating.
Instead I would visit Monsieur Truffe, a real Frenchman with an accent (but not a comic Gabrielle Gaté one) but no website. His cart is almost smack in the middle of the main market hall and he has become one of the most popular artisans in Melbourne (according to bloggers at least), as I’ve said before.He makes some of the best truffles I have ever tasted in Australia. They are not too sweet. Plain dark, lime, rosemary or mountain pepper. His caramelized chocolate coated roasted almonds are second only to ice ( or crack cocaine) in their addictive qualities.Today I’m buying a truffle made with a single estate 65 per cent Felchlin chocolate, of which I’m told there are only 30kg left in Australia – probably a lot less by now. You can also buy this stuff by the pound.
Or you could go for the flourless chocolate mousse. It doesn’t matter what you choose really. Everything is good at Monsieur Truffe.