The NYC Chocolate Project: Teuscher Chocolates of Switzerland

With two locations in the city, Teuscher Chocolates of Switzerland offers NYC tourists and locals some seriously decadent confections. Founded in 1932 in Switzerland by Dolf Teuscher, Tuescher’s signature offering are the champagne chocolate truffles – of which I have eaten many, many, many of. The chocolates themselves aren’t the prettiest things to look at, they’re simple, polite domes dusted in a powdery white sugar coating. But the quality and care put into creating these unassuming treats are obvious in the flavor.

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Teuscher’s champagne chocolates are made with Dom Perignon champagne (the good stuff! I feel like Ina Garten would approve), butter cream, surrounded by a dark cream ganache, then enrobed in milk chocolate. These rank up there with Grey’s Papaya hot dogs, good pizza, and good sushi for me. Pure comfort. My family has actually made a yearly tradition of walking to see the tree at Rockefeller center, taking a touristy picture, then swinging by Teuscher. There’s something about being surrounded by the chaos and glamour of the city while enjoying fancy chocolate flown in from Zurich. Then, of course, we brave the crowds and descend upon the problematic subway system (you did hear that they’re raising the fares soon? Crazy!).

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Don’t sleep on Teuscher’s other chocolate offerings though, these jewel-shaped gianduja truffles were silky and ideal. The Bailey’s Irish Cream and Pistachio truffles are definitely worth trying too. What’s really pleasant about Teuscher chocolates is that you can taste the intensity of the chocolate without missing out on the flavoring aspect. You taste the champagne in the champagne truffles, but the chocolate is good enough that you taste that too. There’s nothing quite as trying as a champagne truffle that doesn’t taste like it has even the remotest splash of champagne in it. You won’t experience such disappointment here.

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Though the $112 a pound price tag can cause general sticker shock, two champagne truffles usually cost between $8-9, which is not entirely astronomical considering that they’re flown in from Zurich and are comprised of quality ingredients. If you’re looking for an extra special gift, stop by during the holidays. These pictures are from the Summer, where they go all out on décor and specially styled boxes, so you can imagine the effort and imagination that goes into the holiday offerings. My family actually hangs a little Swiss doll ornament that we purchased at the Rockefeller Center shop years ago.

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If you’re looking to avoid the crowds, the 61st Street shop is much smaller, and much quieter thanks in part to their no cellphones rule (suggested by a sign posted on the door). Find more information about Teuscher, and to purchase your own chocolates, click here.

Straight from London: Artisan du Chocolat

I can’t believe the holidays are already here. I know it’s only October, but really, people have clearly brought out the pumpkins, pumpkin spice lattes, and are only a hop and a skip away from rocking around the Christmas tree. It’s thrilling, and if the weather would be a little more autumn and a little less winter I would be even more excited (no, but seriously, it’s been icy cold here in the city). If you haven’t already started thinking about the holidays, then now’s the time. My favorite gift to my mother last year was these amazing chocolates from Artisan Du Chocolat. Because the famed chocolatier is located across the pond in London, naturally some gifts like this one will take a little more forethought and planning.

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The chocolates can take up to a couple of weeks to transport, I ordered early in December last year and sat the box on a cold windowsill until Christmas morning – they arrived with plenty of time to spare. I’m not sure if the excellent shipping was because I live in NYC, so I would definitely advise giving yourself a week leeway if you live on the West Coast or in the mid-west or basically anywhere else that’s not the East Coast.

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These photos are from last years’ haul, but Artisan du Chocolat has whipped up some new and exciting offers for this year’s holiday season including an advent calendar for children and one for adults as well. The calendars are a great way to familiarize yourself with their chocolates – or you can pick up any of their assortments.

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Last years’ Holiday Beseen Assorted Tin was fantastic, featuring some of Artisan du Chocolat’s best chocolates – ganaches, salted caramels, chocolate pearls, coated nuts, etc. An assortment like this is perfect for holiday gifting, and also really great to keep around the house for holiday visitors.

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But what really makes Artisan du Chocolat worth the swoon-worthy shipping fees are, of course, their salted caramels. Or more specifically, their Original N°1 Salted Caramels. I first discovered them when I was at The London years ago at a press event where our parting gift from the team at Gordon’s restaurant there was a few of these salted caramels.

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These sea salted caramels where originally created for Gordon Ramsay’s menu at Claridge’s in 2002 or 2003. I’m not shocked that Chef Ramsay placed them on his menu as they really are a special treat. Unlike most salted caramels, this chocolate solidly encases a surprise of liquid sea salted caramel. Artisan du Chocolat uses pure untreated grey salt which is “harvested by hand from clay marshes, holds a wealth of minerals and trace elements that enrich its taste.” Sounds good, doesn’t it?

I’m a massive fan of passion fruit desserts, anything tart or even citrusy appeals to my sweet tooth. If you’re like me and like a little tart to cut through your sweet, the Passion Fruit Sea Salted Caramels are right up your alley. These chocolates are delightfully intense.

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Artisan du Chocolat chocolates are all prettily packaged, if the conversion rate was friendlier I would definitely buy them as gifts for all my friends and clients. For now I’ll make a holiday tradition out of ordering these for the woman that brought me into this world (and myself!).

More details on Artisan Du Chocolat, and to order them, click here.

New York City Valentine’s Day Chocolate Guide

New York City Valentines Day Chocolate Guide

New York City is home to some of the world’s best chocolate shops, from bonbons to bars, truffles and filled treats, whatever you’re looking for chances are you’ll find it. I’ve been on a mission to find the best chocolates in the city, and now that Valentine’s Day is almost here I thought I would share my shortlist of the best places to buy chocolate in New York City for Valentine’s Day:

L.A. Burdick

L.A. Burdick is perfect for easy Valentine’s Day gifting. The chocolates are very intense, which makes them great for dark chocolate fans! Their signature assortments are packed with bonbons and L.A. Burdick’s signature chocolate mice, packaged in an adorable wood box and sealed with wax and a ribbon. The petite wood assortment contains approximately 10 bonbons and 1 small mouse and clocks in at just $16. Located at 5 E 20th St, New York, NY 10003 and online here.

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Xocolatti

For the adventurous palette, Xocolatti chocolates toy with exciting flavors that are definitely worth tasting. With flavors like Olive Oil Basil, Sake, Rye Whisky, and Pineapple Habanero, it’s no wonder that Xocolatti’s chocolates made it onto Oprah’s Favorite Thing’s list of 2015. A 9 piece truffle collection will cost you around $28. Decorated in bright, beautiful colors, the truffles taste as eye catching as they look. At 172 Prince St, New York, NY 10012 or online here.

 

A photo posted by Krista (@nyctalon) on

Chocolat Moderne

Chocolat Moderne is hands down my favorite chocolate place right now. If you like your chocolates to have that great snap, to be perfectly balanced, and not overly sweet, this is the chocolate shop for you. Although Chocolat Moderne favors more intense dark chocolate flavors, even milk chocolate lovers will fall in love with Moderne’s offerings.  I stumbled upon this hidden shop before the holiday season and have already been by at least four times since. The quality of chocolate and perfect use of flavor keeps me coming back again and again, a selection of these is sure to win the heart of your Valentine! The friendly team at Chocolat Moderne will gladly tie up your chocolates with a bow. Pick up your chocolates at 27 W 20th St #904, New York, NY 10011 or online here.

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Stick With Me Sweets

Former Per Se Chocolatier, Susanna Yoon’s Stick with Me sweets shop is a great place to stop by for Valentine’s Day gifting. Her bonbons are works of art, and the flavors she offers are sure to score you points with a loved one. I recommend the Caramelized Banana, Liquid Salted Caramel, Raspberry Rose, and Wild Strawberry, but whatever you get them, they’re sure to love. Located at 202 Mott St, New York, NY 10012 and online here.

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Jacques Torres

Jacques Torres was one of my first forays into artisan chocolates. In my house, we consider his chocolates the old faithful of sweet treats – they never fail to please. A box a champagne truffles is my Valentine’s Day pick, but don’t forget to pick up some Love Bugs (a passion fruit white chocolate) and a few of his insanely delicious chocolate chip cookies. At 285 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10023, for a full listing of locations or to order online click here.

For more great Valentine’s Day related content, be sure to check out these awesome posts written by my fellow Chosen Chix bloggers: