Until very recently sophisticated chocolate referred to single origin chocolate, preferably with a high percentage of cocoa solids. Now this single origin dark chocolate seems positively tame by comparison with some of the more exotic chocolates available today.
Visits to gourmet chocolate retailers and research online uncovered these more unusual chocolates:
— Raw dark chocolate with banana pieces and cayenne (Antidote Chocolate)
— Raw dark chocolate with pomegranate and acai berry (Gnosis Chocolate)
— Milk chocolate with African rooibos tea and dried cherries (Vosges Chocolates)
— Soft caramels with Kalamata olives (Chocolate Moderne)
— Dark chocolate with lavender and honey (Chocolate Springs)
— Dark chocolate with fig ganache and blue cheese (H.S. Chocolate Co.)
As spicy ethnic flavors become more popular and mainstream, they are also being used to add zing to chocolate and other desserts. These chocolates also reflect a greater interest in floral flavors and exotic fruits.
Are exotic chocolates here to stay?
At the Chocolate Show in New York City, I posed this question to a few chocolatiers and here are their responses:
H.S. Chocolate Co.
Overall, people are becoming more adventurous eaters now, so, yes, these sophisticated chocolates are here to stay. However, while adventurous eaters will keep purchasing these unusual chocolates, there will always be a group of people that has no interest in exploring exotic chocolates.
Yes, they are definitely here to stay. Dark chocolate and exotic chocolates are viewed as healthy foods.
Yes, people are always looking for new and different flavors