I am now going to join the slew of other SF bloggers writing about the SF Chocolate Salon. I don’t have pretty pics, or even anything terribly deep to say, but I want to share my best find of the show: Snake & Butterfly. They make fair trade, organic, interesting chocolate (bean to truffle, all in house). The woman at the table when I walked up was happy to chat, answer questions, tell me about their bean sourcing (one step removed from farmers, with plans to save up and go visit some of the farms soon) and was generally enthusiastic about chocolate. It’s a small business, alive for less than two years, and they’re local to me (Campbell, CA – 50 miles away) and they sell at a couple farmers’ markets (though none in the City yet).
They were tasting a variety of things at their stand, several different single origin bars and their chocolate covered caramel figs. Their Madagascar chocolate was bright and fruity, their Venezualan rich and earthy, the cherry chipotle was fascinating (a little too smoky for me at that moment, but very interesting). I didn’t get to try their Thai truffles (coconut, lime, cayenne) but bought some anyway, because I love those flavors. I enjoyed learning that this truffle was created at the request of the woman who talked to me. She told the chocolatier (who I think is her father) that he had to make one because she loved Thai food so much. I couldn’t agree more and can’t wait to try these.
Other stands of note: Socola (not fair trade, but good ingredients and intense, interesting flavors); Nicobella (fair trade, organic, vegan – if that’s important to you, the coconut milk ganache was lovely); Fentiman’s (natural sodas, a lovely refreshing respite amidst the sea of chocolate).
Worst of show goes to the Van Gogh Vodka chocolate martini. So sweet I threw it out after one sip. Nothing subtle or interesting about it. In a hall full of sweets, the beverages should be there to provide refreshment, cut the sugar and prepare you to re-enter the onslaught.
That’s it for my chocolate filled brain. Sweet dreams!