Monday, January 11, 2010

Divine Divine Divine Chocolate Cocktails

It was a couple of months ago now that I crossed paths with Mathilde Of Mathilde's cuisine and she mentioned a Divine chocolate cocktail evening that she had revently attended. "um, sorry, a what cocktail evening?!". Thankfully she informed me that they had mentioned having another one and if they did she would tell them to invite me. Phew.

Mathilde is a girl of her word. Last December I was cordially invites to attend a Divine Chocolate Cocktail evening. Now, anyone who has been on a chocolate tour will know I prefer to eat my chocolate than drink it, and I was on unfortunately on antibiotics this particular evening. But I had to try at least one (and then a LOT of the chocolate truffles). There were two cocktails on offer and I opted for the berry version over the coffee option, and it really was Divine. I was so tempted to drink more. It somehow managed just the right blend of chocolate with the fruit and the alcohol to be easy to drink but still chocolatey enough to know there was chocolate in it. Slightly reminiscent of the icy chocolate drink L'Artisan make in the Summer (and actually a little like the one from Godiva too, though Artisan may be upset for me including them both in the same sentence!). Apparently the Sanderson is going to keep them on their menu. Hooray. I'll definitely be back in the Summer.

I had obviously heard of Divine before this evening but I had never made a special effort to taste their chocolate or learn more. It's my understanding that really fine quality chocolate requires a close relationship with the grower where they do get paid a premium for making the effort to grow quality beans. Therefore, I patted myself on the back for choosing superb chocolate where the farmers did get paid enough too. The reality is not everyone will choose to spend as much on chocolate as I do and it is fantastic that there is a company that is going to extended lengths to make sure that everyone who helps to get the chocolate in our hands is justly compensated for their efforts. What surprised me particularly in tasting the truffles made by David, Divine's account manger but also a former chef, was just how good they were. Incredibly moreish. A little secret I learnt that evening was that some other chocolate companies that sell bars in our supermarkets add cocoa back into their blend because they believe people expect the bitterness in 70% chocolate. Divine don't do this and thus have a smoother tasting chocolate that's pretty darn good for a high street brand. The people in the company are pretty lovely too. Not to mention you can eat it and feel good about helping the families who helped to produce it.

Earl Grey and White Chocolate with a dash of Tequila.

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