Photo credit Winky Lewis
Every fall, we introduce a new menu. Our team has extensive discussions as to what chocolates to cycle out of the lineup, and what new tastes to introduce. Since I started the business seven years ago, only three chocolates are still with us: Salted Caramel, Passion Vanilla and Pistachio Raspberry, none of which can ever go away lest we have a customer mutiny! We have limited space in our case, so use a rotation system with monthly introductions.
Everyone on the team is responsible for new confections. It has allowed a rich tapestry of fresh tastes to emerge: for example, Darcy introduced Turkish Coffee, Peppermint and Malted this season. The latter two would never have been on my French radar! The French think of mint as a very British thing, therefore by nature a suspicious culinary oddity (not fair I know!). And malted never was a thing in my childhood, so I had no appreciation for the nostalgia attached to that yummy taste. All three chocolates now have devoted fans.
Sarah on her part created Ginger Chai and Coconut. Also two new absolutely delicious chocolates I would never have envisioned. Both have been a huge hit since they came in the case.
But Ruby's decision to make Bergamot her first ever chocolate hit much closer to home. I brought her back supplies of the tea she much enjoyed while living in France. She wanted it as the base for her creation: you will be so impressed with her chocolate, to be introduced next week!
My offerings usually stay close to my French roots, except for the Mango Habanero (exotic!) that will make its appearance for Valentine day. The Pear Rosemary is a delicate, very French chocolate, and for the holidays I decided to tackle Chestnut in milk chocolate. Chestnuts, whether eaten roasted and warm on the streets of Paris, or as exquisite, very expensive Marrons Glacés in their fancy gold foil, are at the core of French holidays. They so belong with us and our Portland winter lineup!