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best chocolates in the world to order via internet

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cocoagirl Dec 8, 2003 10:38 AM

Please let me know what you all think- I am tired of Godiva

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    wurstle RE: cocoagirl Dec 8, 2003 11:02 AM

    LA Burdick at http://www.laburdick.com and Jacques Torres at www.mrchocolate.com both make fabulous chocolates - the kind where you get a huge chocolate buzz with each bite and they're so intense you can't have more than one or two at a time. nirvana for chocolate lovers.

    3 Replies
    1. re: wurstle
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      David Kahn RE: wurstle Dec 8, 2003 03:48 PM

      LA Burdick does indeed make great chocolates. The only thing about them is that, in my experience, they don't keep very well, so one has to plan (and consume) accordingly.

      1. re: wurstle
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        colin.marcom RE: wurstle Jun 13, 2008 12:58 PM

        The correct URL for L.A. Burdick Chocolate is actualy www.burdickchocolate.com

        1. re: colin.marcom
          maria lorraine RE: colin.marcom Oct 31, 2008 09:23 PM

          I love Burdick. The savory spices they use, and the skill with which they use them,
          is truly remarkable. They're very smart chocolatiers there.

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        Mrs. Smith RE: cocoagirl Dec 8, 2003 12:27 PM

        If you don't mind spending a serious packet on chocolate, La Maison du Chocolat makes some of the most incredible chocolates in the world. Definitely first-tier top-class chocolate (makes Godiva look like waxy dross) -- you won't be dissapointed. I had formerly pledged my allegiance to Neuhaus Chocolates before receiving a large gift box of Maison Chocolates earlier this year. I felt like the proverbial "scales" had fallen from my eyes (or tastebuds). Here is one example, alas, where the more expensive product is actually the far far better. I've even tried the equally pricey Fauchon chocolates in Paris, and they aren't as amazing as what Maison puts out. Link below.

        Also, I have a particular favorite that is MUCH MUCH easier on the wallet, and, to my taste, almost as good as Maison du Chocolat. It's Piron Belgian Chocolatier in Evanston Illinois (509 Main St. • Evanston, IL 60202
        Telephone (847) 864 5504 ). You must call for a catalog (they aren't online, but if you call they will send you one) to get their chocolates. They don't quite have the variety that Maison does, nor are they as fantastically gorgeous, but this is a little one-shop operation where everything is made by hand (yes like Burdick, but not so whimsical and I think this has a more pronounced and mature flavor than anything Burdick puts out) exclusively from Callebaut chocolate. Now, in the premium European chocolate world, to my taste Callebaut (Belgian) edges out Valrhona (which the French use, mostly, unless they make their own) with a smoother, less edgy taste. I also prefer the gianduja (hazelnut flavored milk chocolate) of Callebaut to any other that I've tasted. Now, this is a matter of taste. Some people like their chocolate to have the sharp, almost bitter edge to it (French style, usually, not Belgian), so make your choice carefully. This little Belgian chocolatier also has what I'd consider more conservative flavors than, say, a Recchiuti chocolate. Chocolate is comfort food for me -- I like a few surprises, but I don't want to be challenged by it. So, if you're looking for very full-flavored, beatiful, professionally-done but hand-made chocolate for a rock-bottom price for premium chocolate, give Piron a try.

        As you can see, I think about chocolate a lot :)

        I'd love to hear of other people's favorites.

        (Oh, and a subset of the "chocolate" genre -- truffles. There's a truffle store -- truffles only, no regular couverture chocolates -- in San Francisco that makes the finest truffles I've had (though I have not had Maison's truffles, so there's that caveat). These are original French-style truffles. Tiny, dense in texture, irregular, dusted with cocoa or possibly nuts, and in traditional, often liquer-based flavors like cognac and creme de menthe. To die for, if you're looking specifically for truffles as opposed to chocolates. These are not like the couverture-covered often puffy and light golf-ball sized truffles put out by people like Godiva. This is essentially a flavored ganache -- just chocolate and cream -- cooked together, cooled and formed. One of the finest expressions of chocolate, I think! http://www.xoxtruffles.com/framepage.htm

        )

        Link: http://www.lamaisonduchocolat.com/ind...

        4 Replies
        1. re: Mrs. Smith
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          Fatemeh RE: Mrs. Smith Dec 8, 2003 02:50 PM

          Oh, yes... xoxo truffles are heavenly, and so fairly priced.

          Their Earl Grey truffle (for me, anyway) has become the standard by which all others are judged.

          1. re: Fatemeh
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            Ruth Lafler RE: Fatemeh Dec 8, 2003 02:57 PM

            The burnt caramel are also outstanding -- even hyperdelicious if I may say so! The price is insanely reasonable, especially since they are so tiny but rich that a quarter pound (about 20) goes a long way.

          2. re: Mrs. Smith
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            panda RE: Mrs. Smith Dec 9, 2003 03:37 PM

            i tried La Maison du Chocolat earlier this year and had a similar "scales falling" experience. i haven't bought anything else since. i second your rating them at the top.

            this week my office received a big gift basket from Harry & David including a box of "truffles". i bit into one labled raspberry expecting to encounter a raspberry (or raspberry liqueur) infused dark chocolate ganache-like filling, only to be confronted with a hard, bright pink white chocolate center. it was NOT a truffle. they should just come up with some other name for them so there will be no confusion between those creepy, greasy golfballs and true delicious french truffes. the only thing that i would add to your description of french truffles is that that actually do often/usually/always have a couverture shell. i'm pretty sure you will really like Maison's truffles as well.

            1. re: panda
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              Mrs. Smith RE: panda Dec 9, 2003 05:22 PM

              You're right, of course, about most French truffles having a layer of couverture. XOX truffles I referred to do have the thinnest of couverture shells over most of their flavors. I have yet to figure out how he (the French chocolatier who owns this shop) makes the coating so incredibly thin, however, It is only a milimeter of thickness -- barely enough to notice if the filling is ganache (which most of them are). This is just to barely keep the truffle together (like liquid caramel one,) or to keep it from melting. It's not the 1/8th inch of waxy couverture that covers, say, a Godiva "truffle" -- in fact it's such thin shell it's almost not noticable.

              I'm sure I'd love the Maison truffles -- I can't imagine anything less than transcendant coming from that wonderful palace of chocolate. I still yearn for those chocolates -- the box I got only had two "Valencias" which I honestly think is the most delicious sweet I've ever tasted -- I'll have to splurge and get a box of those truffles.

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            Ellen RE: cocoagirl Dec 8, 2003 12:38 PM

            Lake Champlain Chocolates is a small batch producer that makes excellent chocolates and even better truffles --some of the best I've ever had and the only one's my mother likes. But now there are all these other places I'll have to try.... Sigh.

            Link: http://www.lakechamplainchocolates.co...

            1 Reply
            1. re: Ellen
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              dolores RE: Ellen Jun 28, 2008 02:28 AM

              Ellen, I don't know if you still read here, but I was recently treated to Lake Champlain Chocolate truffles as a gift, and find them to be nirvana. Better than Teuscher, and that's saying something.

              I just used my last few on graham crackers as a near-S'More, and it was heaven.

              Due to the cost, I'll wait until the Fall for more, but they are simply wonderful.

            2. m
              MPD RE: cocoagirl Dec 8, 2003 12:50 PM

              Thele M's chocolates:

              http://www.ethelm.com/

              1. b
                Bob Libkind RE: cocoagirl Dec 8, 2003 01:33 PM

                Generally I abhor anything politically correct. But Jubilee Chocolates (a local and fairly new chocolatier in Philadelphia) overcomes this handicap. Great flavors!

                Link: http://www.jubileechocolates.com/

                4 Replies
                1. re: Bob Libkind
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                  --susan RE: Bob Libkind Dec 8, 2003 03:56 PM

                  [drool] It's getting harder and harder to walk by Caviar Assouline at RTM and remember that i need groceries more than chocolate. Jubilee just amazes me. Even the flavors that are not something i'd usually pick are amazing.

                  1. re: Bob Libkind
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                    Celeste RE: Bob Libkind Dec 8, 2003 04:32 PM

                    Another vote for Jubilee. Simply outstanding. Subtle flavoring that blew me away.

                    1. re: Bob Libkind
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                      saucyknave RE: Bob Libkind Dec 14, 2003 07:05 PM

                      I've put an order in for a couple boxes to give as gifts. They were scrumptious.

                      1. re: Bob Libkind
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                        saucyknave RE: Bob Libkind Dec 14, 2003 07:14 PM

                        I've put an order in for a couple boxes to give as gifts. They were scrumptious.

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                        anko RE: cocoagirl Dec 8, 2003 01:39 PM

                        http://www.chocosphere.com/

                        This site offers the wide selection of chocolates.

                        Yesterday, I went to Jacques Torres store and got pieces of wine and port chocolate and a cup of hot chocolate. Wicked hot chocolate/spicy hot chocolate is so great! Chocolate covered blueberry was great, too. They are very delicious.

                        http://www.mrchocolate.com

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: anko
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                          wurstle RE: anko Dec 8, 2003 01:43 PM

                          Did you get the marshmallows in your hot chocolate at Jacques Torres? SOO0 good and like no other marshmallow I've ever had, but what all marshmallows should strive to be!!

                          1. re: anko
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                            David Kahn RE: anko Dec 8, 2003 03:46 PM

                            Concur with the chocosphere.com recommendation. I'm really into dark/bittersweet chocolates -- they have a great selection, and are easy to deal with.

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                            Annabelle RE: cocoagirl Dec 8, 2003 02:06 PM

                            Bissinger's (its on the web) makes wonderful hand-dipped chocolates. They're not chi-chi, froufrou, like European truffles. It's a much more old-fashioned feel. The flavors are basic--nuts, caramels, fruits--but superb.

                            Try the nut assortment or the regular mixed box.

                            Bissinger's also makes hard-to-find novelties like decorated sugar cubes.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: Annabelle
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                              Chorus Girl RE: Annabelle Dec 8, 2003 03:11 PM

                              In September, they sell amazing chocolate-covered blackberries.

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                              bunnyr RE: cocoagirl Dec 8, 2003 11:00 PM

                              Just curious...
                              Does it have to be ordered over the Internet?

                              "Why do you ask? I DID say 'via Internet', can't you read???!!!"

                              Well, here's why I ask.

                              Aside from the local chocolate chain stores like Lindt, Godiva, Fanny Farmer, etc, there's always a chocolate or candy store downtown in most towns. IF they make chocolate, I think you'll be very surprised how much better it is.

                              Local chocolatiers have enormous competition. To make it, they've been forced to make the best chocolate possible. I've experienced great chocolate at local chocolate shops in New England, most notably in unexpected places such as Needham MA, Exeter, NH and Wilton, NH.

                              Here's a brand new place in Merrimack, NH right by our area which has some great stuff that you can buy online.

                              Link: http://www.swanchocolates.com/about.cfm

                              Image: http://www.swanchocolates.com/store/i...

                              1. d
                                DevonT RE: cocoagirl Dec 10, 2003 04:06 PM

                                Richart's "petites" are incredibly intense filled chocolates. Some of these are more unusual flavors--like thyme and prune. About the size of a cubic centimeter they pack such a wallop that all my senses shut down absorbing them. Sigh.

                                Richart in Paris was closed for renovation when I went there this fall. Very disappointing but you can order online. Not cheap, of course, and not for everyone, but I think they are stunning.

                                When I want more of a traditional box of chocolate I like Maison du Chocolate. Another one to try is Bernard Dufoux. The chocolates are very good, rich, and smooth but not as prettily packaged as others. I have not tried ordering online, but they do offer it. I can't find the link right now, but I have the URL at home if you are interested.

                                Link: http://www.richart.com/

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                                  tarteaucitron RE: cocoagirl Jun 14, 2008 04:14 AM

                                  Speaking of truffles. I haven't had to chance (yet!) to try many of the delicious ones mentioned here, but one that came to my mind that blew me away is.. a truffle filled with runny caramel and accented with fleur de sel. From the description it is also flavoured with vanilla too. A simple combination yet perfect balance of flavours. I'm usually not keen on caramel but this one just makes me want to have a piece, or six, just thinking about it now.

                                  It's from a more local chocolatier in Quebec, although they do deliver to various places nearby: http://www.chocolatsgg.com/cartean.html

                                  Does anyone happen to know who else makes a good version of it?

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                                    fussycouple RE: cocoagirl Jun 14, 2008 04:25 AM

                                    Another vote for La Maison du Chocolat.

                                    There may be places "as good", but I seriously doubt there is anything *better*.

                                    1. Foodnerds RE: cocoagirl Jun 14, 2008 03:12 PM

                                      While in Belgium we tasted as much chocolate as possible with Galler being our favorite.

                                      http://www.gallerusa.com/

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                                        Dianasaur21 RE: cocoagirl Jun 27, 2008 08:51 PM

                                        Donnelly's Chocolates in Santa Cruz, CA.
                                        They use Valrhona couverture and do very nice truffles and house bars
                                        http://www.donnellychocolates.com/

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: Dianasaur21
                                          Ruth Lafler RE: Dianasaur21 Jun 27, 2008 08:59 PM

                                          I've tried dozens of different flavored chocolate bars, and the Donnelly rose chocolate and smoky chipotle are two of the best.

                                        2. h
                                          houndgirl RE: cocoagirl Oct 27, 2008 10:08 AM

                                          I haven't seen any recommendations yet for Vosges Haut Chocolat out of Chicago...

                                          http://www.vosgeschocolate.com/

                                          They have some very unusual flavors and very nice gift boxes.

                                          1. e
                                            emilief RE: cocoagirl Oct 27, 2008 12:07 PM

                                            Rechiutti Chocolate from California are also wonderful, especially their salted caramels.

                                            1. Non Cognomina RE: cocoagirl Oct 27, 2008 03:39 PM

                                              I'm reluctant to mention Chocolate Springs Chocolates because it's one of those rare gems that is so good one fears it will all be over once it is "discovered."

                                              http://www.chocolatesprings.com/index...

                                              It's a small operation, and all of the chocolates are made by hand. I love the Cognac Truffles and Mendient. Assortments offer traditional bon bons (Grand Marinier, Raspberry), trendy (salted caramel, green tea) and unique flavors (Jasmine Ganache, Tangerine Ginger). The hot chocolate in the shop is amazing--you can buy the mix online, but it's not quite as good as it tastes in their store.

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                                                vtnewbie RE: cocoagirl Oct 28, 2008 07:36 AM

                                                http://www.abdallahcandies.com/

                                                The peanut butter cups are mind-bogglingly good. Heavy for their size, rich, excellent ingredients. When I lived near their store, I had the luxury of getting their seconds for cheap.

                                                I need to place an order.

                                                6 Replies
                                                1. re: vtnewbie
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                                                  dolores RE: vtnewbie Oct 28, 2008 07:54 AM

                                                  vtnewbie, have you tried Lake Champlain chocolates? If you have, I wonder how they compare to http://www.abdallahcandies.com/?

                                                  1. re: dolores
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                                                    vtnewbie RE: dolores Oct 29, 2008 04:36 AM

                                                    I just went to the Lake Champlain factory store last weekend. The truffles are the best I've had in the US. They rival the ones in Belgium. Really they might have won, but the Belgian truffles are larger!

                                                    Abdallah's chocolates are not really in a head-to-head competition with Champlain's. Abdallah's makes more "candies" than they do chocolates, and their peanut butter cups are one of their more "chocolatey" creations.

                                                    1. re: vtnewbie
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                                                      dolores RE: vtnewbie Oct 29, 2008 05:20 AM

                                                      You LIVE near the Lake Champlain factory??? Oh boy, would I be in trouble!!!!

                                                      Yes, I've had Teuscher and LC truffles are better. The Belgian truffles are larger? Wow, those are some big truffles.

                                                      I hope LC keeps doing things as they are, I hope they don't cut corners in the near future.

                                                      Thanks for sharing, vtnewbie, it's nice to know I've found the source of the pot of gold.

                                                      1. re: vtnewbie
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                                                        silvergirl RE: vtnewbie Oct 29, 2008 08:31 AM

                                                        Can I come visit?!? I was given a box of L.C. by a fella once. Needless to say, he was thanked properly. I've been planning to for years, but I'm absolutely ordering some stocking stuffers from there this Christmas.

                                                        1. re: silvergirl
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                                                          vtnewbie RE: silvergirl Oct 29, 2008 11:49 AM

                                                          Wow, you're from Columbus? I grew up in Milan! Many, many miles since then.

                                                          The LC factory store even has tours on the weekend with lots of free samples. I live a couple of miles away. AND I used to live about 15 miles from Abdallah's. Funny how it keeps working out that way!

                                                          1. re: vtnewbie
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                                                            silvergirl RE: vtnewbie Oct 29, 2008 12:24 PM

                                                            yep. good ol' southern Indiana. the closest "good" chocolate available is Scharffen Berger and I despise Scharffen Berger.
                                                            But if I lived where you do, I'd probably have scurvy and anything else caused by vitamin deficiencies because I'd only eat chocolate! And my kids would be extra hopped up because that's all I'd feed them too!
                                                            But you're very lucky. Vermont is beautiful and sooooo much more liberal. I'd love to live there.

                                                  2. Alcachofa RE: cocoagirl Nov 1, 2008 06:36 AM

                                                    Nirvana Chcolates
                                                    http://www.nirvanachocolates.com/

                                                    Freshly imported from Belgium. (You do know that Godiva in the US is not from Belgium, right?) Way better than Champlain or Burdicks. Not familiar with other chocolates listed.

                                                    You can also try www.chocolatesource.com for other choices.

                                                    1 Reply
                                                    1. re: Alcachofa
                                                      puppymomma RE: Alcachofa Nov 1, 2008 02:53 PM

                                                      I live within driving distance of Burdick's - not a close distance, but if I really want them, I can go get them. They are good.

                                                      But my husband just came home from a business trip to San Francisco and I asked him to get me Christopher Elbow chocolates (http://www.elbowchocolates.com/). I've only had two of them so far, but they are heavenly. I'm totally sold. They will be my favorite splurge from now on!

                                                      Meryl
                                                      http://inspiredbites.blogspot.com/

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                                                      john epstein RE: cocoagirl Dec 20, 2008 08:55 AM

                                                      Try the chocolate truffles at Chatham Candy Manor (Cape Cod, MA). They are absolutely the finest I have ever had. None compare. Every year I send a box to my clients and many tell me that these chocolate delicacies are the only reason they still put up with me. I'm not so sure they're joking! I believe their web site is www.candymanor.com, but you can Google them. Oh, they are also some of the nicest people I have ever done business with. And, if you like chocolate covered Oreos, order some of those, too -- but try the truffles first. Enjoy!

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                                                        WTBD RE: cocoagirl Dec 20, 2008 09:39 AM

                                                        How about Pierre Marcolini?

                                                        http://pierremarcolini-na.com/

                                                        Not the most user-friendly website, but I could drool over the photos for hours while pining for the box I got for xmas last year. I managed to savor it until after Easter, one tiny, amazing morsel at a time.

                                                        1. Beach Chick RE: cocoagirl Feb 8, 2013 01:30 PM

                                                          My fave from Paris..
                                                          Debauve & Gallais

                                                          www.debauveandgallais.com

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