Saturday, February 11, 2006

Caffarel Gianduia 1865

Everyone’s talking about Valentine’s candy. But I thought I’d give you a taste of a few other seasonal treats instead. Yesterday it was candy to watch whales by. Today it’s Olympic candy. A friend of ours, Matt, was working in Torino for the Winter Olympics on the Canadian Pavilion and just returned. He was thoughtful enough to bring back some candy, and this Caffarel Gianduia is “officially” branded Olympics merchandise (it even has a hologram seal!).

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These little cuties are packed in a clear cello bag, each piece wrapped in gold foil, marking the Torino 2006 Olympics. The pieces are shaped like little old lady handbags and are about two bites each (or you can put it all in your mouth, don’t let me stop you).

imageCaffarel is the chocolate of Torino, so it’s a natural fit. And if I do say so, I think this is a sporty chocolate. What I found particularly fascinating while browsing the Caffarel site was the story of how they invented this gianduia chocolate. Back in the 1860s cocoa was rationed, so Caffarel figured out a way to create a chocolatey confection that didn’t feel skimpy. This gianduia contains 28% hazelnuts! The wondrous thing about combining the chocolate with hazelnuts is the soft feel it creates on the tongue. It’s sweet, without masking the chocolate and nut flavors. But very sticky, consider this the Italian version of peanut butter sticking to the roof of your mouth.

I was also happy to try these because the last Caffarel bar I had to try had bloomed and I’d heard that this was an excellent Italian brand. I can see why now. Tasting these little morsels has also made me crave their darker sisters called Gianduiotto Fondente, which is made without milk.

If you’ve ever had Ice Cubes and are looking for a more sophisticated version, especially one without the addition of hydrogenated oils, this might be it. Soft, nutty and sweet with that slight cooling sensation that makes me pop another one in my mouth, just to make sure they all do that. It’ll be a sad day in my house when these are gone, and that’ll probably be soon, I can’t risk them melting in this freaky heat wave we’ve got going on in Los Angeles right now.

Name: Gianduia 1865
    RATING:
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 6 TEMPTING
  • 5 PLEASANT
  • 4 BENIGN
  • 3 UNAPPEALING
  • 2 APPALLING
  • 1 INEDIBLE
Brand: Caffarel
Place Purchased: gift
Price: unknown
Size: 250 grams
Calories per ounce: unknown
Categories: Chocolate, Nuts, Italy

POSTED BY Cybele AT 2:40 pm Tracker Pixel for Entry    

Comments
  1. I’ve never tried Gianduia 1865 but I did have a Caffarel bar once and I reallllly liked it.  I DON’T KNOW WHYYY.  So tasty.  Um.  Anyway, now I want these little chocolate hazelnut nuggets!

    Comment by Robyn on 2/12/06 at 9:10 am #
  2. You give it a perfect rating and “place purchased: gift”. This is so mean! hahaha smile)
    Ok, back to froogle to hunt down these babies!

    Comment by flavia on 2/13/06 at 9:04 am #
  3. Cybele… Glad ya liked em…  I purchased them at the Olympic Superstore in Torino for roughly 9 euros if I remeber correctly…  If you do find the urge to order more I believe there available from the Official Olympic Site at…

    https://www.olympicstore.it/e-shop/EN/elencoProdotti_CIOCC.asp

    Comment by Matt on 2/13/06 at 1:34 pm #
  4. Cybele's avatar

    Yee! 9 Euros ... they’re tasty but expensive!

    Flavia - I went looking around the ‘net and didn’t find anyone in the states who carried anything like this. Luckily Matt knows where to get them!

    On a related note - I put a couple in some hot, cooked chocolate pudding the other night and stirred them up. Yum! The nutty paste was a good addition to a rather plain dessert. Unfortunately the heat causes the hazelnut oil to separate as it cools, so eat quickly.

    Comment by Cybele on 2/13/06 at 1:52 pm #
  5. The “Geo Quiz” on The World (an NPR/PRI news show) featured Torino recently, and they talked about these chocolates. I gather they’re quite the specialty of the area. The local bulk store where I buy Callebaut chunks (for candy making, mostly) has a gianduja chunk; that news piece with your review has inspired me to try it!

    Comment by Tricia on 2/14/06 at 11:08 am #
  6. Cybele's avatar

    Tricia - yeah, I think the news of giandujia is spreading like Nutella. (hee!)

    I also picked up some Trader Joe’s Nutella knock off that I’m gonna give a taste test one of these days (no hydrogenated oils in it).

    Comment by Cybele on 2/14/06 at 2:58 pm #
  7. Cybele's avatar

    Ooh - Flavia!

    I just got an email from another web-vendor that specializes in Italian specialties and they have Caffarel.

    http://www.daprano.com/caffarel.htm

    Comment by Cybele on 2/15/06 at 11:23 am #
  8. Am I missing something? Does the FDA keep us from importing the chocolates from the Olympic store Matt posted? Every other country is listed on the “ship to” list. Sigh.

    I wasn’t actually going to buy some. I just wanted to see how much it would be if I wanted to buy some. (and i’m procrastinating my writing, obviously). I’ll try the site Flavia posted, but the tins on the Olympic site are so pretty…

    Comment by sallie on 2/17/06 at 12:31 am #
  9. These look like they taste amazing—which is a huge bonus.  I just feel like I should shove a few in my mouth, they look so soft and supple… smile

    Comment by flickerfly on 2/19/06 at 11:17 am #
  10. Can I buy Caffarel Gianduia here in the states anywhere?  I love the stuff!

    Comment by Nikki on 2/22/06 at 10:01 am #
  11. Cybele's avatar

    Nikki - the link above to daprano.com is the only place online that I’ve found them.

    I’ve seen other Caffarel bars in gourmet stores before, but not the little guianduia, but that may change with all the attention it’s been getting in the press (there was a huge article in the NYTimes food section last week).

    Comment by Cybele on 2/22/06 at 10:06 am #
  12. WE ARE THE EXCLUSIVE IMPORTERS OF CAFFAREL CHOCOLATE IN THE UNITED STATES. WE CARRY ABOUT 300 OF THEIR ITEMS IN OUR CHARLOTTE, NC FACILITY.

    WE SELL TO SPECIALTY/GOURMET STORES THROUGHOUT THE COUNTRY, OR CONSUMERS CAN PURCHASE DIRECTLY FROM US AT OUR WEBSITE, http://WWW.DAPRANO.COM.

    CAFFAREL PRODUCES SOME OF THE BEST CHOCOLATE IN THE WORLD, AND IT IS AVAILABLE YEAR ROUND IN THE US. LATELY, IT IS GETTING NEW INTEREST SINCE THEY ARE OFFICIAL SPONSORS OF THE 2006 WINTER OLYMPICS, BUT IT HAS ALWAYS BEEN RECOGNIZED IN THE SPECIALTY/GOURMET MARKET AS AN OUTSTANDING PRODUCT.

    THEY ARE THE ORIGINATORS OF GIANDUIA IN 1865, AND ARE PROBABLY BEST KNOW FOR THIS PRODUCT. LAST YEAR THEY INTRODUCED A DARK CHOCOLATE GIANDUIA,IN ADDITION TO THEIR TRADITIONAL MILK CHOCOLATE GIANDUIA THAT IS REALLY STARTING TO CATCH ON.

    SIDARI ENTERPRISES LLC DBA DAPRANO & COMPANY
    CHARLOTTE, NC
    http://WWW.DAPRANO.COM
    877.365.2337

    Comment by MICK SIDARI on 2/24/06 at 6:25 am #
  13. Cybele's avatar

    Thanks Mick for the additional info - I already posted the link to your site after you emailed me but I know there’s a lot of interest in getting a hold of these candies since the NYTimes article.

    The dark chocolate variety sounds really good.

    Comment by Cybele on 2/24/06 at 7:32 am #
  14. I would like information for ordering Gianduia fondente- dark choclate

    Comment by Kathy Gordon on 5/10/06 at 7:54 am #
  15. Cybele's avatar

    Kathy - I suggest you look at Daprano.com ... it looks like they sell a large selection of Caffarel products.

    Comment by Cybele on 5/10/06 at 10:40 am #
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