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Chocolates in Dallas

Rodeline Nov 3, 2008 08:36 AM

I'm visiting the Dallas for one week and I would greatly appreciate any recs on specialty chocolates in the area. I've heard of Noka chocolates...what do you think?

  1. Carrollton Foodie Dec 1, 2011 08:38 PM

    I grew up with Katherine Clapner back in the day when she was just Kathy Clapner. We lived in the same neighborhood and I remember my mother driving both of us to extracurricular school events. I was so excited recently to read about her chocolate/business success. Hubby and I have been to Dude Sweet twice now and have "spent our allowance" on her amazing confections. I'm one of those weird chicks who couldn't care less about chocolate and I definitely don't care much for dark chocolate, but something about her creative spin on chocolate is really addictive. You've got to try her creations. Amazing stuff!

    6 Replies
    1. re: Carrollton Foodie
      irodguy Dec 2, 2011 01:54 PM

      Yep which is why I told Katherine she was a chocolate pusher :-)

      1. re: irodguy
        twinwillow Dec 2, 2011 04:35 PM

        I'm not ashamed to say, I'm one of her addicts.

        1. re: twinwillow
          foiegras Dec 2, 2011 04:47 PM

          And I'm one of her pushers ... but rather unsuccessful :( Others seem to find the chocolates too dark, too intense, which is exactly what I love about them. I'm doing a poor job of choosing my targets apparently. I guess if you think Hershey's is 'the good stuff,' you might not be ready for Dude, Sweet ;)

          1. re: foiegras
            CocoaNut Dec 2, 2011 05:25 PM

            I liked the molasses one you "pushed" me toward. Have yet to try the blue cheese, but I'm very happy they're not in close proximity to me.

            1. re: CocoaNut
              irodguy Dec 2, 2011 08:58 PM

              Yep no kidding it would be really bad if they were any closer to me. All though it's pretty darn fast to tear down the tollway from my office at GBT & NDT. I made it back and forth in less than an hour.

              1. re: CocoaNut
                foiegras Dec 4, 2011 09:36 AM

                That's true ;) I was thinking of my in-person pushing efforts. I took DSC fudge to a dessert potluck since I didn't have time to bake. When the hostess took a bite and pushed it away, I took it back :D She looked healthy to me.

                I was there yesterday (HQ), and showed great restraint by leaving with only one box of chocolates.

      2. c
        CocoaNut Apr 4, 2011 10:24 AM

        Groupon at CocoAndre - only 11 hours left


        8 Replies
        1. re: CocoaNut
          ktla97 Apr 13, 2011 07:59 AM

          I second CocoAndre. I had all three major chocolatiers here (Chocolate Secrets, Dude, and CocoAndre) and CocoAndre won in my book.

          1. re: CocoaNut
            dfwtexex Jun 29, 2011 11:22 AM

            CocoAndre is really special, but it's hard to compare it to Dude, Sweet. They are both excellent, but in different ways. CocoAndre is all about traditional Belgiun chocolate and beautiful molded chocolate pieces. It's old school, but wonderful. There is nothing old school about Dude, Sweet. The creativity in the tastes is amazing. That these two shops are both in Oak Cliff, about a mile from each other, is amazing.

            1. re: dfwtexex
              irodguy Nov 28, 2011 01:51 PM

              I have to give it to Kathryn at Dude Sweet Chocolate. I can make my own run of the mill truffles that are pretty much as good as any. But I would never even think of tobacco ....... Yes I still make my own toffee, but for chocolate I make the trip to "the OC"

              1. re: irodguy
                foiegras Nov 28, 2011 03:28 PM

                Tobacco!!! Haven't heard of this flavor ... what's in them??

                1. re: foiegras
                  twinwillow Nov 28, 2011 04:50 PM

                  Is there a warning from the Surgeon Generals office on the package?

                2. re: irodguy
                  irodguy Nov 28, 2011 06:14 PM

                  Food grade tobacco. There are of course many more flavors. My favorite thing might be http://dudesweetchocolate.com/Break-U... Mold wine based or bourbon based ... it makes the most awesome martini.

                  1. re: irodguy
                    CocoaNut Nov 29, 2011 07:33 AM


                    1. re: CocoaNut
                      irodguy Nov 29, 2011 07:43 AM

                      Not that I am aware of.

            2. DallasDude Aug 10, 2010 03:40 PM

              I obviously enjoy Dude Sweet, but am a fan of J Dorian as well.

              I also appreciate the hell out of Zach Townsend at Paper and Chocolate. Try his samples of the pastries he is offering, but be aware they sell out every weekend very early. I believe he is on vacation until the first weekend of September.

              1 Reply
              1. re: DallasDude
                sanderw Aug 11, 2010 07:45 AM

                Both Dude, Sweet and J Dorian will be at the DallasChocolate.org Chocolate Conference on Saturday along with 10 other great local chocolatiers. It's a good chance to see all in one place what Dallas has to offer.


                [full disclosure: I run DallasChocolate.org]

              2. b
                braisemebaby77 Feb 19, 2010 09:15 AM

                Sublime Chocolate in Allen is excellent. My favotite is the Coconut-Curry..it's freakin' outstanding!


                4 Replies
                1. re: braisemebaby77
                  OCNC Feb 23, 2010 04:30 AM

                  I must try it. Is it better than Dude Sweet?

                  1. re: OCNC
                    sl1 Feb 23, 2010 07:38 AM

                    Stopped by Dude Sweet Chocolate Valentines day and picked up some chocolates. The flavor combinations and the quality are definatly the best I have had in Dallas. Katherine Clapner was there. She was very friendly and explained what everything is how she makes some of the items. I only wish that the larger boxes had two of each flavor. Cant wait to go back!

                    1. re: sl1
                      DallasDude Feb 23, 2010 08:42 AM

                      Did you sample the hot cocoa? That stuff rocks and will be a necessity over the next few days of snow(?).

                      1. re: DallasDude
                        sl1 Feb 23, 2010 08:54 AM

                        Didnt event think about it. It would have been perfect since it was so cold and windy. Next time, for sure.

                2. d
                  dfwtexex Feb 7, 2010 06:38 PM

                  Dude, Sweet for the win.

                  But, there is a new place in the OC, near Bishop Arts that also sounds good. CocoAndre. Here is a link to that story.


                  1. twinwillow Feb 7, 2010 06:36 PM

                    Both Wholefoods and Central Market will be selling the chocolate goodies by Dude Sweet Chocolate.

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: twinwillow
                      DallasDude Feb 8, 2010 12:31 PM

                      Katherine Clapner at Dude, Sweet Choclate is pretty amazing. What she does with chocolate should be illegal. Although it will soon be available at the CM and WF locations, it is worth a drive to visit her. Pretty sure she will turn you on to a hot cup of cocoa when you enter.

                      The stuff is simply in a different league, and makes Noka look feeble.

                      1. re: DallasDude
                        amokscience Feb 27, 2010 01:33 PM

                        I've had Jacque Torres chocolates in NYC and DSC is far superior in flavor and sweetness balance.

                        The lady there (I assume Katherine) was extremely friendly and offered sample after sample. I had the hot chocolate and couldn't speak for a good 10 seconds while I processed the experience. Nice full, mouth coating richness, smooth chocolate flavor, not too sweet. I was spooning out the last bits with my finger. Katherine - all the while - is almost gleefully shoving little samples into my hands.

                        After tasting the stuff I didn't hesitate to drop the cash for several boxes. Probably a good thing OC is so far from me.

                        1. re: amokscience
                          NWLarry Aug 8, 2010 06:27 PM

                          My point of comparison was Recchiutti in San Francisco, and DSC easily blew them away. Run, don't walk. Personally I would call this a must stop for any Dallas trip, and it certainly is for me in the future.

                      2. re: twinwillow
                        foiegras Nov 27, 2011 05:28 PM

                        Anyone know who's making CM's new private label truffles? Info I read just said made in TX.

                        Have mentioned elsewhere that my new Dude, Sweet Chocolate fave is the blackstrap fudge. Blackstrap rum, blackstrap molasses, and finely chopped pecans. Really hits you between the eyes, if you like that kinda thing ;)

                      3. o
                        OCNC Feb 7, 2010 11:17 AM

                        I;m surprised noone said this one but you have to go to DUDE SWEET CHOCOLATES in the OC. The lady used to work at Stephen Pyles and my fav waitress there told me to check it out. My favorite is the salt and passion fruit. THe SO can't get enough of the Oahacan with chili powder and paprika. They don't call it CRACK IN THE BOX for nothing so don't leave without a box of that.

                        4 Replies
                        1. re: OCNC
                          QueenCrab Feb 7, 2010 03:08 PM

                          Not to question your voucher for Dude Sweet Chocolates, I'm sure they're very good, but who calls anything "crack in the box"? IJS

                          1. re: QueenCrab
                            OCNC Feb 7, 2010 07:28 PM

                            They have lots of funny names for their chocolates and that is one of them. Their Apple Jack truffle has apple butter and Jack Daniels. Even if you don't think the names are funny you will love the chocolates!

                            1. re: OCNC
                              QueenCrab Feb 12, 2010 07:24 AM

                              Look, someone else calling a dessert crack.


                              Just a chess pie with an oatmeal crust! How dumb.

                          2. re: OCNC
                            foiegras Feb 26, 2010 01:32 PM

                            Today I went to Hattie's and Dude, Sweet Chocolate. Hattie's was fine, but Dude, Sweet Chocolate--OH. MY. GOD. The woman working there gave me a sample of the--I think it was fudge? with 85% chocolate & blue cheese infusion. It was good, albeit a concept that I wasn't quite ready for. Couldn't really taste blue cheese, it just seemed to add richness.

                            Then she gave me a sample of the hot cocoa with house made marshmallows, which was a religious experience--and Dude, Sweet Chocolate (perhaps needless to say) is my new church. It's Valrhona chocolate, and it is incredible. Best I've ever had. Everyone who is very, very nice will be getting it for Christmas. Those who aren't ... well, it's the communion of my new church and it would simply be wrong to give it to them.

                            I bought a small sweet chocolate sampler, hot cocoa, and Crack in a Box. I haven't had any of it yet because after the hot cocoa, I'm afraid I might OD. But I'm working up my courage as we speak ...

                          3. twinwillow Feb 5, 2010 08:02 PM

                            Regarding Noka Chocolates: Over priced and over rated!

                            1. twinwillow Feb 5, 2010 07:57 PM

                              "Paper and Chocolate" inside Inwood Village is a wonderful gift shop that not only sells unique papers, stationary and related gift items they also sell incredible chocolates from Amelie in Italy and Wiseman Chocolate from Hico, Texas.
                              I've been to two chocolate classes there arranged by the Slow Food people and I was very impressed with the quality of these two diverse brands of chocolate.

                              1. Rodeline Nov 3, 2008 01:17 PM

                                Thanks for the info!

                                5 Replies
                                1. re: Rodeline
                                  pizzaQTpie Nov 4, 2008 11:57 AM

                                  Neuhaus on Preston and Royal. Right smack in the middle of Dallas. Great European chocolate without all the frills. It is attached to a cafe and a Alessi shop. Noka is all about VERY expensive presentation/packaging housed in a million dollar 'showroom'. I just didn't get that place when i went - way overrated.

                                  1. re: pizzaQTpie
                                    foiegras Feb 7, 2010 07:30 PM

                                    I like Godiva better than Neuhaus ...

                                    If you like a practiced flirt, stop and talk to the guy at the little Noka ... what do you call it, not a kiosk, but not a store either ... by the Neiman's entrance at Northpark. Just don't waste your money on the chocolate.

                                    I assume the link at the top is that investigative piece on Noka ... truly a great read. Like a real-life spy novella for chocolate lovers ...

                                    1. re: foiegras
                                      kel Jun 27, 2011 08:17 PM

                                      Godiva is a commercial middle grade product.

                                      1. re: kel
                                        foiegras Jun 28, 2011 04:21 PM

                                        One that I like better than Neuhaus. Some of their LE truffles have been quite good.

                                        Neuhaus Cafe
                                        626 Preston Royal Shopping Ctr, Dallas, TX 75230

                                        1. re: foiegras
                                          CocoaNut Jun 29, 2011 09:09 AM


                                2. b
                                  babar Nov 3, 2008 11:14 AM

                                  J Dorian is a great chocolatier up in Addison:

                                  5312 Beltline Road
                                  Dallas, Texas 75254

                                  He varies the flavors seasonally, but usually has quite a good assortment. I've used boxes from their as gifts with a lot of success, even for chocolate snob friends.

                                  I don't think Schakolad is strictly local, as they have locations across the US, but the hot chocolate at the location at the Shops at Legacy wasn't bad.

                                  2 Replies
                                  1. re: babar
                                    MadMiles442 Feb 5, 2010 03:55 PM

                                    JDorian is a jerk. I called to confirm their store hours and was told 6pm. After driving 20 minutes and arriving at 5:45, they were closed up and lights off. I'd shop elsewhere.

                                    1. re: MadMiles442
                                      twinwillow Feb 5, 2010 08:00 PM

                                      I'll say one thing about J. Dorian chocolates. They're definitely an "acquired taste". I don't care much for them.

                                  2. c
                                    CocoaNut Nov 3, 2008 08:55 AM

                                    I'm not familiar with Noka, but in Dallas there is:

                                    Chocolate Secrets
                                    3926 Oak Lawn Avenue
                                    Dallas, TX 75219
                                    (214) 252-9801

                                    Personally, I've had much better quality unadorned, packaged chocolates (Sarotti) at a fraction of the cost, but if you're looking for glitz, check out this place. They also have an adjoining wine room and I believe offer chocolate/wine pairings.


                                    In Grapevine, there's:

                                    Schakolad Chocolate Factory
                                    601 S. Main St.
                                    Grapevine, TX

                                    I sampled 4 or 5 of their individual chocolates and experienced the same disappointment with one exception: amaretto ganache. Rich, creamy and loaded with amaretto! Given their displays, they seem to cater more to unique gifting ideas of chocolate footballs, saxophones, doggies, footprints, picture frames, etc.

                                    You can google either one and find other review sites - probably NOKA as well.

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: CocoaNut
                                      Letsnotbreakup Nov 27, 2011 06:47 PM

                                      Second the Chocolate Secrets place; good chocolate, good ice cream, good wine.

                                    2. l
                                      luniz Nov 3, 2008 08:46 AM

                                      regarding Noka:

                                      Unfortunately with Doughmonkey out of the picture there are no world class chocolatiers in town.

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