Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Theo Confections

Theo Chocolate is a new company that makes fair trade, organic chocolate from bean to bar (and bonbon) right in Seattle. Think about it ... they start with the raw materials and create not only the chocolate but go on to craft the fine ganaches and couveture - all without the use of pesticides, hormones or chemical fertilizers and giving the cacao folks a fair price for their beans. There are very few chocolate makers out there that do that, anywhere in the world, let alone here in the states. The only one that even comes close in the bean to bonbon arena Michel Cluizel in France.

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I got to try just about everything Theo Chocolates makes at the Fancy Food Show last month including their Confections Collection.

Earl Grey - a beautifully smooth ganache with a rich and dark blend of tea and bergamot flavors in equally rich chocolate.

Ivory Coast - the essential chocolate truffle, dark and smooth with a buttery feel that helps with the woodsy and bitter notes of the chocolate.

Peanut Butter & Jelly - yes, right next to the most upscale of all chocolate expressions is the PB&J except this peanut butter is a praline (kind of crystallized) with a raspberry fruit paste to die for.

Fig Fennel - this has to be the homerun hit of the entire box. Not just because it’s so wonderfully flavorful, but because I’ve never had this combination in quite this way before.

Mint - it’s like it was muddled just for me only moments ago ... the mint tastes that fresh.

Peanut Butter - like the PB&J, this one has a peanut butter praline that’s not sweet at all but has a wonderful woodsy, nutty crunch to it. A little dry.

Scotch - exceptional with its savory smoky notes like tobacco and leather mixed in with the butter and raisin notes of the chocolate.

Burnt Sugar - I’ve had several of these now, the effect is rather like a light creme brulee, with all the flavor of the crusty sugar top and all the creaminess of chocolate and heavy cream in the truffle.

Lemon - the white truffle of the pack, it’s really lemony without being sticky white-chocolate sweet. It has both the tangy notes and the zesty flavors.

Vanilla - very vanilla, with little flecks of it in the ultra-smooth ganache and an overall bourbon note.

(I shared this box with my husband and he ate the Ginger truffle.)

These might be my new favorite chocolates, if only they were easier to get a hold of. I’ve not been to the factory, so I don’t know if you can just go in there and buy singles (or a whole box of one flavor). No compromises ... that’s what it’s all about. It’s still a guilty pleasure, but fewer things to feel guilty about.

I also have a complete assortment of their bars that I’m working my way through, so stay tuned for the reviews of those.

POSTED BY Cybele AT 12:38 pm Tracker Pixel for Entry     CandyChocolatierReviewTheoChocolateCoffeeEthically SourcedMintsOrganicPeanuts9-YummyUnited States

Comments
  1. Wow. I thought I was really full from dinner, but now I have a sudden chocolate craving. Those flavors sound fantastic, especially the freshly muddled mint and burnt sugar.

    Comment by Lila on 2/28/07 at 2:51 pm #
  2. I *love* Theo Chocolate!  I actually did a series of reviews on a bunch of their single origin bars and also on their 3400 Phinney line—*so* good.  They don’t ship their truffles (at least last time I checked), so I’ve never had them and I am extremely jealous!

    Comment by Julie on 2/28/07 at 3:46 pm #
  3. Hmmm

    No rating visible in my browser(s). I’m curious, too.

    Comment by Russ on 2/28/07 at 4:34 pm #
  4. YUMMM… All those flavors sound so good.  I just tried Trader Joes chocolates.  They came in this long (3 foot) box with all these very creative flavors.  This reminds me of them.  I am tempted to buy a box right now on their site!!

    Comment by Chloe on 3/01/07 at 3:19 am #
  5. I live about a mile from their factory.  They do tours every day.  The $5 admission price is well worth it given the amount of sampling that happens.  You can also sample pretty much as much as you want when you’re just there to shop.  I must recommend both the chai milk chocolate bar and the coconut curry milk chocolate bar - both are really excellent.

    Comment by Brianna on 3/01/07 at 6:53 pm #
  6. Thank you for the great comments!  It is our purest joy to bring fine organic, fair trade chocolate to all of you!
    Please note that we DO ship all over the U.S., plese visit our web site or call our shop to place an order 206.632.5100
    http://www.theochocolate.com

    Again, thank you!!

    Autumn Martin, Chocolatier

    Comment by Autumn Martin on 3/02/07 at 10:46 am #
  7. I am so tempted to buy these…. The 12-piece set, it would be a splurge but I’ve been craving fine chocolate for a while and also wanted to try “exotic” chocolate (chocolate with unsual flavors instead of just caramel or nuts added). Excellent review, excellent product. I hope this isn’t like the other time when I got nervous about buying… decided to finally commit to it and found it was gone…

    I’m sure all my guilt will disappear as quickly as the chocolates.

    Comment by Kai on 3/02/07 at 1:48 pm #
  8. I tried these and they were horrible.  They were overpriced and tasted moldy.  I bought them at Whole Foods and they would not give me a refund.

    Comment by Susan on 3/02/07 at 2:28 pm #

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