Celebrating Chocolate

February is National Chocolate Lovers month –  with Valentines Day around the corner, why not dedicate the whole month to that glorious, subtle, sweet, milky, dark and smoothly molded fabulous food… I could go on with a string of lovely and suitable adjectives, but a. I would bore you and b. I will need a nibble of some form of chocolate as I write about it. I am a self-confessed chocoholic. I am not only dedicating a whole post to it, I am celebrating my favorite food. Er, well, there are others, but this ranks as the best of the best. The photo below has two of my favorite brands, um, I’m a little bit guilty of biting into all of them at the same time, which is why they are all ripped apart – but only a little bite here and there. No, really.  I could have more… I just won’t, well, not yet anyway. I’ve given these brands a shout out before and want to do it again, not only are they fabulous they serve a greater cause.

Divine Chocolate is a leading fair trade brand in the UK with the farmer in mind. The money from sales go directly to the Kuapa Kokoo Ghana( good cocoa growers) – a co-op for farmers based on the vision of one particular farmer – Nana Friongpong Abrebrese, together with a group of farmers who have decided they need to take control and trade their own cocoa, sell and farm ethically, they are now a pioneer in the world of environmentally friendly cocoa. They serve to help women and farmers lead a better life, so, every slab you purchase will benefit the villages that work hard to bring ethical chocolate to our shelves.

Seattle-based Theo is organic, fair trade and let me get this right… they are the only fair for life certified, bean- to- bar factory in North America. I support them like crazy. They buy their cocoa directly from farming co-ops like the one I mentioned above. They keep it within the farming community, ensuring a better livelihood for cocoa farmers, supporting their endeavors to keep the product environmentally friendly, organic and safe for the consumer.

They have so many different flavors. I am a dark chocolate person, so I try everything 70% and above. Well, I feel better with dark chocolate and I sort of justify it internally by telling myself that my heart benefits from it. Anything for chocolate – that’s my motto. The Orange and Almond/Cherry are my favorites, along with the really dark, intense, yet smooth 85% slab. Once you try these, you can’t ever go back to anything else. Um, you can, but then I would start comparing…. You taste every subtle ingredient in this brand of chocolate. If you drink wine, then you know how the palate works – the swirling, smelling and spitting out etc. Well, the same applies to chocolate. You don’t spit it out, um, that would be a complete waste. But you let the palate take over and allow the smooth cocoa to invade your senses. Underneath it all, there will be hints of orange, salt, caramel and if you’re really into it, you will taste the vanilla as well – I could do this for a living. Theo has no more than 5 ingredients, and no dairy in some. They have gluten-free slabs too. Other brands to try are Dagoba & The Tea Room( the honey and tea flavors are incredible in this chocolate, oh and I’m begging you to try the raspberry rooibos). Now that I have adequately promoted chocolate, I shall move on…. I am so hungry.

 

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17 thoughts on “Celebrating Chocolate

    • Tatu, some of the best chocolate I brought back was from Greece last year. This one chocolate shop in Athens had the most divine range, it is a light green/ blue box and you can choose however many you want, I forget the name. I also had the best hot chocolate there. I’m hungry too now 🙂

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      • oh no…..you can’t remember the name????I will be on the look out for the light green/blue boxes then 😉 Greeks are not really known for their sweets as they tend to put wayyyyyyy too much sugar in them for my taste at least. However, Greek cuisine, if done right, ahhhhhhhhhhh!!

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      • Tatu, I will get it because I took pictures of the box, that’s how much I loved it. They were unusually good. I know, I wasn’t expecting to taste great chocolate in Greece, I knew the cuisine on the other hand would be fabulous. I did some touristy places and some local, close to where we stayed, local was so good. Greek yogurt and honey on the other hand, I will take any day. We had fun shopping at the super market even though no one understood us 🙂 such a treat to be with locals.

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  1. I can see that you love dark and psst it’s my favourite too! We don;t have these brands out here – we have Whittakers, Cadbury, Nestles. The one I like the most is from ALDI – the cheap grocery brands…but their chocolate is yummo! Yes thanks pet – you made me want some too now 😦 Yay Chocolate Month February and ahem..every month? l-) xxx

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    • Mumsy, I’ve always been a Cadbury girl, have some Old gold in my fridge as an emergency right now 🙂 🙂
      Give me a cherry ripe extra dark and I am blessed out. Sigh. Oh my gosh, we don’t have Aldi here but last year my cousin brought over some marzipan covered in dark chocolate,
      Champagne and strawberry flavored too… They were divine. I think it’s seasonal though. Mmmm every month should be National Chocolate month darling…
      xoxo

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  2. Thanks for introducing me to new chocolates, MM. My favorite is also from Seattle. Dilettante chocolates. Their secret recipe for Ephemeres, a chocolate truffle they alone make, comes from some Bavarian royal ancestor of the owner. Trust me, the dark chocolate Ephemeres is divine, and the only way to get it is to order online or go to Seattle. I moved away from Seattle in the 80’s, before Internet, and I used to call them up and order. This was even before they had a shipping service. They figured I was addicted and would oblige me. Guess I was and still am. Now, you know my secret.

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    • I wonder what it is about Seattle that makes coffee and chocolate so good, Monica. I don’t drink coffee anymore but I sure do love their chocolate. I checked out the Dilettante website after you sent it to me and I just wanted all the chocolate on it. They look divine, not to mention the packaging… I am such a softie for packaging 🙂
      With a name like Ephemeres… Well, I definitely want a piece of that. I will have to go back in there because I didn’t see it the last time I checked. Oooooh more chocolate for me. I am all for something new..

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  3. Grrrsss…..C’MON ‘Like’ button ….let me hit it more than once……lol

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE Theo Choco…mmmmmmm…..*rolls eyes back … makes inappropriate gurgly sounds deep in my throat* …

    I just also tried their dark choco & ginger bar the othe day. It has the slightest hint of ginger … it comes on after you let the choco sit and blend into your tongue.

    So, now comes the BIG question for you …

    Choco? Or Colin Firth?

    (Ohhh…I cannot wait…Downton Abby tonight!!!!!)

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    • Haa haaaaa I make the same inappropriate gurgle sounds in my throat too yes! I do. I love when it rests on my tongue … You are a girl after my own heart – eating orange and dark chocolate now- Wait!!! Did you say dark chocolate and ginger… Oooooh I love those flavors and I have only ever tried it in the Divine brand. You mean Theo has a bar too???? The search begins … Hmmm good question 🙂 i love it…how about eating chocolate, watching Colin Firth and hubby giving me a foot rub – nodding!!! Ahhhh lovely.

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      • As for you pick of choco + colin + foot rub …. OMG….that is soooooooo greedy to pick not just the two choices I gave you…but to add in the foot rub!

        *nips a piece of choco….closes eyes and imagines Mathew Crawley rubbing my feet*

        *then thinks…oh….Mary is here….and kicks her away*

        LOL

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      • Haaaaaa.. I know right? it feels so good to have chocolate and Colin Firth in the same room and then you add my lovely hubby who watches girly movies with me… I get sooooo greedy, yep! sadly though, he’s given up most of the Colin Firth movies as I have made him watch them too many times now… haaaaa
        oh Katie, now there’s an image, chocolate and Matthew Crawley rubbing your feet, oh did you see that preview of him and Mary with her tummy lying somewhere?

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      • Soooo…how did you like this past week’s episode?

        I myself will say…

        I LOVED IT!!! Mr. Bates is home! And … that ending, where Mathew, Tom, and Lord Grantham all got together was just wonderful.

        But ….ahhhhhh….what we will do after next’s week’s season finale???!?!??

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      • Ooooh Katie, if I could rewind and watch, I would do it a hundred times. The best episode to date, I think. Bates came home, he saved Thomas, Matthew and Mary canoodling so romantically made me feel warm and er just lovely and Branson the peace maker. How could it be so good? My favorite part – the cricket match. I love cricket. I can’t believe it is the season finale and you know what… I sadly saw a preview of this episode, I am not ready for it at all. We have to talk next week. sigh, double sigh.

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  4. *Sigh* That last paragraph…you are cruel, CRUEL! Hahaha. I am slightly allergic to chocolate, you see. My nose itches all day when I eat maybe 1/4 of a bar. but give me chocolate of the dark, 75% cacao or higher variety and I’m fine with scratching all day. 😀
    I love that you’re focusing on the fair trade brands and I wish they were available here, too. I’ve tasted a ginger/chocolate combo and it’s soooo good.
    Anyway, hmm, National Chocolate Lovers Month? Because right now I’m actually putting together a post with pics of chocolates… 😉

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    • Oh Tita, I’m sorry you can’t eat chocolate. 😦 That is such an awful allergy. I wonder what it is in the chocolate that makes your nose itch. I had to stop milk chocolate, so I went to dark.
      They actually sell coconut water and coconut oil from the Philippines and most of Asia which is Fair trade now, I am so happy that the money goes directly to the farmers. I will buy chocolate that helps anyone. Um, it helps me too… oooh ginger and chocolate… yum huh?
      Really, I can’t wait to see your photos. You know I love them. I am just about to post one on brownies…

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