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best chocolates in manhattan

bakedalaska Dec 21, 2007 07:19 AM

I'm looking to buy some chocolates for my family and friends in Boston, and I want to buy from a chocalatier that only has stores in NYC. I love Kee's Chocolates on Thompson St, but Jacques Torres on the UWS is much more convenient for me. Which is better? Or more importantly what's the best chocalatier in Manhattan? I'm looking to buy boxed truffles/filled chocolates.

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  1. guttergourmet RE: bakedalaska Dec 21, 2007 05:31 PM

    I still give the nod to Teuscher's champagne truffles though Kee's are great. For something completely different try Sakagura's green tea and shochu truffles.

    1. j
      Jane A. RE: bakedalaska Dec 21, 2007 06:58 PM

      As far as I'm concerned the best (and most overlooked) chocolatier in Manhattan is Martine's. I go to the one on the 6th Fl. in Bloomingdales. Everything is absolutely freshly made. It will go bad since there are no preservatives. The dark chocolates are truly fabulous and I always get specific requests from friends: "if you're bringing something". They've got 3 or 4 kinds of truffles in dark chocolate and others in milk (which no one I know wants). I believe there's another shop up in the east 80's somewhere.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Jane A.
        Striver RE: Jane A. Dec 22, 2007 04:50 AM

        Martine's uptown is a small shop on 82nd street, just east of 1st ave. They make Belgian-style chocolate with clever shapes and luscious fillings - particularly the ones with fresh whipped cream. The dark chocolates are very good, but - and I'm not generally a milk fan - milk chocolate is what they do best, IMO. Definitely worth a try.

      2. c
        CornflakeGirl RE: bakedalaska Dec 21, 2007 07:11 PM

        I'd schlep down to Kee's.

        8 Replies
        1. re: CornflakeGirl
          chocokitty RE: CornflakeGirl Dec 22, 2007 02:51 AM

          Second Kee's

          1. re: chocokitty
            hallrs RE: chocokitty Dec 22, 2007 04:22 AM

            We did a chocolate tour last year in putting together a present for a friends 50th and went to all.

            Our conclusions-- third Kee's, but Vosges on Spring has some great "fire red" chocolate as well. Also Michel Cluizel at Abc.

            Not a big fan of Marybello or the Bald Man.

          2. re: CornflakeGirl
            misschopsticks RE: CornflakeGirl Dec 23, 2007 09:10 PM

            Definitely Kee's has the best chocolates. But Kee's chocolates don't keep/travel well b/c they're so fresh. And actually the shop assistants will tell you that they're best for immediate consumption. I wouldn't keep them for longer than 1 or 2 days, so I don't know how that would work out in terms of taking them to Boston.

            Vosge, Marie Belle and Torres all make pretty and impressive presents, but taste-wise not as good as Kee's.


            1. re: misschopsticks
              Niki RE: misschopsticks Dec 24, 2007 08:11 AM

              Li Lac

              1. re: Niki
                BW212 RE: Niki Dec 24, 2007 07:18 PM

                I second Li Lac. The scent alone in there is heavenly!

              2. re: misschopsticks
                kathryn RE: misschopsticks Dec 24, 2007 11:20 AM

                Seconding this. The creme brulee, for example, has a very limited shelf life. Also, Kee's will probably have a smaller selection of chocolates, with more "out there" flavors than Jacques Torres. She may also be out of certain items by the end of the day. I like both, but give the nod to Kee's for inventiveness and freshness, although with freshness comes the compounding factor of delicateness. However, a big box of Jacques makes for a very impressive gift, especially if the receive loves the square/printed type of chocolate truffle/bon bons and/or has seen him on television. The Kee's packaging is a little less fancy, more rustic in appearance.

                1. re: kathryn
                  squid kun RE: kathryn Dec 24, 2007 08:37 PM

                  > She may also be out of certain items by the end of the day.

                  A word of warning for anyone thinking a year ahead: Don't count on dropping in late on Christmas Eve and picking up a present.

                  Though Kee's is usually closed on Mondays, she opened today for the holiday and planned to stay open till 4. But I phoned the shop around 12:30 and everything was already sold.

                2. re: misschopsticks
                  Jane A. RE: misschopsticks Dec 24, 2007 08:22 PM

                  I learned about preserving fresh chocolates for a couple of days from Martine's. Wrap the box in saran wrap (and perhaps even overwrap that with foil). You can keep these boxes in the fridge for a couple of days this way. The wrapping keeps everything from sweating and looking awful. I've got 5 gift boxes in the fridge now - purchased yesterday, to be delivered tomorrow on Christmas day. Take them out of the fridge when you leave the house. Unwrap when they've come to room temp - usually just outside your destination.

              3. c
                carfreeinla RE: bakedalaska Dec 23, 2007 04:42 AM

                If they are half as good as the ones that I brought back from the store in Brussels a few weeks ago- Pierre Marcolini

                1. b
                  bnemes3343 RE: bakedalaska Dec 24, 2007 08:19 AM

                  I love both Kee's and Jacque Torres, but need to do a bit more research before giving you the definitive answer. As soon as I work my way through several more pounds of each, I will give you a report...

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: bnemes3343
                    optimal forager RE: bnemes3343 Dec 24, 2007 07:21 PM

                    How selfless of you ;)

                  2. r
                    rjm RE: bakedalaska Dec 24, 2007 04:26 PM

                    La Maison Du Chocolat - Madison & 78th.

                    NYC's BEST.

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