Lunch at the chocolate factory…

Yesterday afternoon, I had the rare pleasure of sitting at the communal lunch table with the owners of Abbotsford-based Chocolatas, and their friendly staff. I didn’t expect to be educated (by Veerle Tas) about the proper way to slice an avocado (while still in its skin), but that was just a bonus.

I was really there for the chocolate, having heard that Belgian chocolatier Wim Tas had recently perfected his new salted caramel chocolates. They have been flying off the shelves at the Granville Island location, in a limited test run.

As someone who adores salted chocolate (try Candice’s Hawaiian salted hot chocolate at Sumas Mountain Coffee, folks!), I was eager to try the latest Chocolatas experiment. After an amuse-bouche of a few rounds of the new biscotti flavoured Baileys liqueur in Chocolatas dark chocolate shooter cups, I was ready for my ‘entree’ of salted chocolate. How lucky am I?!?!

The filling of the square pillow of goodness is surprisingly soft without being sloppy. So, you won’t get caramel stuck in your teeth – an attribute especially valued when you are sneaking them! And the coarse salt sprinkle is a welcome first taste just before the tongue settles around the silkiness of the caramel itself. The outer robe of dark chocolate deepens the flavour without overshadowing the caramel centre.

As the Chocolatas crew readies for its main seasonal show – the Circle Craft Christmas Market – I am sure that the salted caramel offering will be a best seller. I suggest waiting a few weeks for the new caramels to hit the shelves.

In the meantime, the new Chocolatas e-commerce website offers a more immediate remedy to chocolate cravings. If you’d rather browse in person, check out their Abbotsford location (where the product is made) or their busy site at the Granville Island Public Market. And of course, there is Circle Craft: November 7-11 at the Vancouver Convention Centre.

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