Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Timothy Adams - Rose, Violet and dark chocolate nut pieces - Aug. 16, 2017

Chocolate(s) of the Day:

Timothy Adams Chocolates
6-piece assortment box included the following bonbons:
  • Rose - Good +
  • Violet - Good +
  • Pistachio Praline - Good 

Weight: 2.5 oz. (70.7 g.) (estimate) in 5 pieces
Calories: 375 calories (estimate) for 5 chocolates
Cost: $16.50 (estimate) for 6 chocolates (box was extra)
Purchased from: Timothy Adams (shop), Palo Alto, CA

Welcome to Day #3 of Chocolate and Flowers Theme Week.
I don't count white chocolate as a "Chocolate of the Day" on this site. Chocolate items need to contain cocoa solids, in part because many "white chocolates" don't contain much cacao (solids or butter).

Because of this rule, I felt compelled to buy an attractively designed 6-piece box of chocolates from Timothy Adams Chocolates (Palo Alto, CA) to ensure some cocoa solids were consumed for the day.

This local shop had Rose ivory* and Violet ivory bonbons that were sweet, decadent and delicious; but both lacked cocoa solids.

So I bought three other dark chocolate covered confections to keep these two ivory floral pieces company, and "counted one of them, a Pistachio Praline chocolate as my daily chocolate.

The Pistachio Praline (dark chocolate covered with a sweet and light, almost a butterscotch ivory center) and topped with pistachio nuts and icing seemed to good match for the two ivory florals.

The two other dark chocolate covered bonbons (a Coconut Cream Caramel and a Nocino (green walnut liqueur) bonbon) were both sweet but quite nice. You may see them featured in the future.

*Some white chocolates may contain little cocoa butter (and/or may substitute other vegetable fats); whereas "ivory" (closer to the color of real cocoa butter) chocolate generally contains more cocoa butter and is considered to be of higher quality.








Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Sunflower Food Co. - Bar du Soleil dark chocolate bar - Aug. 15, 2017

Chocolate of the Day: 

Distributed by Sunflower Food Company
Bar du Soleil
Dark Chocolate with Roasted Sunflower Seeds and Sea Salt
Good
Weight: 1 oz. (28 g.) / 2 oz. (57 g.) total bar
Calories: 145 calories in 1/2 bar
Cost: $3.49 for 1 bar
Purchased from: Draeger's Market, San Mateo, CA

Welcome to Day #2 of Chocolate and Flowers Theme Week.

Today's Bar du Soleil was Distributed by Sunflower Food Company (Lenexa, KS). Smooth, sweet dark chocolate was studded with roasted sunflower seeds and contained a subtle hint of sea salt.

It was a bit of a stretch to include this dark bar in a "flower" themed chocolate week, but without the big, sunny, iconic yellow flowers, you certainly wouldn't have sunflower seeds. (Sunflower petals are also edible, provided they're unsprayed.)




Monday, August 14, 2017

Honey Stinger Mint and Wildflower Waffles - Aug. 14, 2017

Chocolate(s) of the Day:

En-R-G Foods, LLC

Honey Stinger
Gluten Free Organic Chocolate Mint Flavored Waffle
Good - Good +
Weight: 1.06 oz. (30 g.) in 1 waffle
Calories: 140 calories in 1 waffle
Cost: $1.50 for 1 package/waffle
Purchased from: REI store, Mountain View, CA

Honey Stinger
Gluten Free Organic Waffle -  Wildflower Honey
Good
Weight: 1.06 oz. (30 g.) in 1 waffle
Calories: 140 calories in 1 waffle
Cost: $1.50 for 1 package/waffle
Purchased from: REI store, Mountain View, CA

Welcome to the last day (Day #7) of Chocolate and Honey Theme Week, and Day #1 of Chocolate and Flowers Theme Week.

It's not a huge stretch to transition from a honey-themed chocolate week to one focused on chocolate and flowers. Bees gather both pollen and nectar from flowers. Nectar from flowers is later concentrated down by bees and made into honey.

Today's two different flavors of ulta-slim, round Honey Stinger waffle sandwich confections were manufactured in Canada for En-R-G Foods, LLC dba Honey Stinger (Steamboat Springs, CO).

The makers managed the near impossible. They made a knife-edge thin waffle "cookie" that didn't crumble that was chewy and crunchy, delicate yet rich and flavorful and sweet without being too sweet.

The Organic Chocolate Mint Flavored Waffle was surprisingly tasty with subtle hints of chocolate and mint (peppermint). It was my favorite of the two.

The Wildflower Honey Waffle was a toasty, light golden brown; and the lack of other flavor inclusions allowed more authentic honey flavor to shine through.

Experimental Mint Flower Notes:
Instead of syrup on these "waffles" I sprinkled some almost invisible, experimental mint flower and pollen "pixie dust" from my yard on the last bites of these confections. The tiny spearmint and lemon mint blooms gave the waffles a light flavor boost. Mint flowers are milder than mint leaves and are almost always edible if the plant is unsprayed/safe to eat and is washed first. 

Sunday, August 13, 2017

La Belge Chocolatier - Dark Chocolate Spicy Honeycomb bar - Aug. 13, 2017

Chocolate of the Day: 

Le Belge Chocolatier, Inc.
Dark Chocolate Spicy Honeycomb bar
Good - Good +
Weight: 1.5 oz. (43 g.) / 3 oz. (85 g.) in total bar
Calories: 230 calories in 1/2 bar
Cost: $6.00 for 1 bar
Purchased from: Cavallo Point Mercantile shop, Fort Baker, Sausalito, CA

Welcome to Day #6 of Chocolate and Honey Theme Week.

Today's Dark Chocolate Spicy Honeycomb bar was created by Le Belge Chocolatier (Napa, CA), located in the heart of Northern California wine country. The company is known primarily for their chocolate truffle collection(s).

This interesting and appealing dark chocolate bar was peppered with tiny crunchy toffee and honeycomb bits, and was suffused with a subtle, saucy hint of chipotle chili powder.


Saturday, August 12, 2017

Honey Stinger - Mocha Cherry Pro - Aug. 12, 2017

Chocolate of the Day: 

Honey Stinger
Mocha Cherry Pro bar
Good - Good +
Weight: 1.5 oz. (42 g.) in total bar
Calories: 180 calories in 1 bar
Cost: $2.30 for 1 bar
Purchased from: REI, Mountain View, CA

Welcome to Day #5 of Chocolate and Honey Theme Week.

Today's Honey Stinger Mocha Cherry Pro bar was made in the USA for Honey Stinger (Steamboat Springs, CO).

This dark chocolate covered bar had a natural tasting, chewy, honey nougat-like center* with a hint of mocha. The dark chocolate coating was smooth and relatively mild.

Somewhere in the mix (although not visible) were dried sour cherries with apple juice, that contributed a tiny hint of tart sweetness.

While not labeled as an energy or protein bar, this Honey Stinger bar contained 30 mg. of caffeine, some added vitamins and minerals, and 10 grams of protein.** It tasted satisfying to the last bite and successfully helped fuel a trail hike today.

*While made with gluten-free ingredients it contained the standard industry advisory notice about possible traces of allergens (peanut, wheat, egg and other tree nuts) that one often sees when foods are made in a shared facility. 

**This bar contained whey protein isolate and almonds. 







Trader Joe's - Dark Chocolate Honey Mints - Aug. 11, 2017

Chocolate of the Day:

Trader Joe's
Dark Chocolate Honey Mints 
Good
Weight: 1.1 oz. (33 g.) / 7 oz. (198 g.) in total package
Calories: 140 calories in 3 pieces (approx. 1/6 package)
Cost: $2.99 (estimate) for 1 package
Purchased from: Trader Joe's, Alameda, CA

Hello and welcome to Day #4 of Chocolate and Honey Theme Week.

Today's sweet, refreshing Dark Chocolate Honey Mints from Trader Joe's (Monrovia, CA) had only three ingredients: honey, chocolate liquor and peppermint oil. 

Each individually-wrapped round was filled with a soft, ivory-colored, natural tasting honey and mint center and coated in dark chocolate.

These mints (with a slightly spicy, rich dark chocolate aroma) had a honey sweet beginning and a slightly bittersweet finish. A 3-piece serving satisfied a hankering for something sweet in a relatively healthy way.








Thursday, August 10, 2017

Reese's - Honey Roasted Peanut Butter Cups - Aug. 10, 2017

Chocolate of the Day: 

The Hershey Company
Reese's - Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups
Flavor of Georgia - Honey Roasted
Good 
Weight: 1.5 oz. (42 g.) in total package of 2 cups/pieces
Calories: 220 calories in 1 package
Cost: $1.99 (estimate) for 1 package
Purchased from: Missing information

Welcome to Day #3 of Chocolate and Honey Theme Week.

It's fair to say that Reese's is a brand name that looms large when it comes to peanut butter and chocolate in the U.S. 

Over the years, The Hershey Company (Hershey, PA) has developed seasonal and other variations on their classic Reese's peanut butter cup, such as today's Flavor of Georgia Honey Roasted Peanut Butter Cups.

Earlier this year the company began offering a "Flavors of America" collection, with versions of traditional candy bars, e.g. the (Texas) BBQ PayDay bar, (California) Strawberry KitKat bar and today's Georgia-themed Honey Roasted Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, that were designed to capture experiences that one might have had with summer foods in six U.S. states.

These milk chocolate peanut butter cups tasted like classic Reese's peanut butter cups, although perhaps a smidge sweeter.* They had the same addictive, peanut butter filling, and smooth, almost silky milk chocolate coating— the stuff of childhood memories.

*Sadly, the ingredients list included lactose, sugar, dextrose and natural flavors, but no real honey.




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