Karin's superpower - knows where the chocolate is

Sommelier of Chocolate – Ask the Right Questions

Karin Kallmaker Cheers & Chocolate 4 Comments

milk chocolate bordeaux by sees
More than once I’ve been asked how to find a good chocolate. I don’t know why people think I would know, but I usually ask a question or two, or three, and use their answers to send them the right direction. After all, procurement is a matter requiring analysis of palate, allowances for shipping temperatures, humidity and due consideration of personal tastes.

You might also want to check out It’s All Good, my blog about buying great chocolate on a budget.

Really, It’s Quite Simple

Here are the few questions I ask.

  1. Milk, dark, bittersweet, single origin, Swiss, Mexican, and/or Dutch?
  2. How dark a dark? 55%? 70%? Do you curse the people who brought math into the enjoyment of chocolate?
  3. Are you influenced by appearance and whimsy? Ever heard of Moonstruck?
  4. Fillings smooth or coarse? Nibs and/or fruit pieces or sauce?
  5. Liqueors or nut essences? Nuts themselves? Nougats? Caramels or toffees?
  6. Do you consider “white” chocolate to be chocolate?
  7. Does it all taste like a Hershey bar to you or do you get you all warm and fuzzy using phrases like “good mouth”?
  8. Are there some chocolates you refuse to share?
  9. Would you eat something labeled “chocolate-flavored”?
  10. Do you eat chocolate absent-mindedly or does it call for candlelight?
  11. Have you ever admitted to an erotic dream about chocolate? Details, please. Purely for research, you understand. I have a short story due and I already used mine.
  12. Do you long for the time, fitness, blood sugar results and money to work your way through the “unique source” choices at the local upscale market?
  13. I say “Callebaut” and you say….?
  14. Has a Hershey kiss ever prevented a homicide at your house?
  15. Ever said “What’s with the chocolate thing, I can take it or leave it.” Ever say that in a group of lesbians? If so, can I see your scar?
  16. Do you rage at a medical establishment which refuses to prescribe chocolate for PMS when you know it works and want to submit the expense to your medical reimbursement account?
  17. Ever get caught by a sharp-eyed four-year old you’ve just told there’s no dessert tonight with your head in the cupboard and a suspicous cocoa-colored smear on your upper lip?

Now that you’ve gathered information – and had perhaps a fun conversation about tastes, preferences and proclivities – you can wander into the wide world of chocolate with a goal in mind.

If you’re shopping on a budget, you can still get very good chocolate. Check out It’s All Good, a wrap up of ways to delight and still have money for rent.

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