Is fine chocolate better on its own or when paired with something? Increasingly, people are finding that combining chocolate with other food or drink creates a very special experience.
A 2019 survey of US chocolate consumers revealed that fine chocolate consumers typically enjoy eating chocolate on its own. However, there is a growing trend of pairing chocolate with hot beverages such as coffee and tea. Pairings with alcohol such as wine, whiskey, bourbon, and beer are also gaining in popularity.
The survey found that the top five flavor combinations with fine chocolate are almonds, caramel or toffee, hazelnut, coffee, and coconut. Fine chocolate consumers also enjoy chocolate that incorporates local and seasonal ingredients such as honey, berries, and apples.
We have chosen the month of June 2021 to explore fine chocolate collaborations and pairings. We are featuring three of our member companies, Caputo’s Craft Chocolate, Garcia Nevett – Chocolatier de Miami, and Zak’s Chocolate, each of whom offer a variety of fine chocolate products with innovative flavor combinations. We will be posting about these companies throughout the month — follow Make Mine Fine on Instagram and Facebook, and FCIA on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Twitter to learn more.
On June 24th at noon Eastern, we will conclude our month-long celebration with a Chocolate Break/Giveaway on Instagram Live. This is a great opportunity for you to meet the owners of these business, and learn more about pairings and combinations. We’ll announce the winners of the chocolate giveaway during Chocolate Break. You will not want to miss this!
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This month’s featured fine chocolate companies and collaborations
Caputo’s Craft Chocolate
Food has always been an essential part of the Caputo family. After coming to the United States from Greece and Italy, the Caputos owned and operated a small market on Salt Lake’s west side, home to Utah’s very first refrigerated deli case. Tony Caputo’s visits to that little market as a kid, where he would get treats from his aunts who kept shop, served as the original spark of what would eventually become their beloved market and deli.
Caputo’s offers an expansive collection of craft chocolate from around the globe, where the single unifying theme is cacao beans of respectable provenance. Dozens of illustrious brands ship quickly to your door for the same price you’d pay at their markets.
Garcia Nevett – Chocolatier de Miami
Susana and Isabel Garcia Nevett have spent more than a decade perfecting their chocolatier skills, first in France and Venezuela and now in their adopted city of Miami. Always celebrating Venezuelan cacao and chocolate, and now infusing it with the flavors of South Florida, Garcia Nevett – Chocolatier de Miami is the fine chocolate boutique the city was waiting for.
All of Miami’s chocolate and food lovers, as well as those delighted by thoughtfully created gifts and self-indulgent surprises, will fall in love with Garcia Nevett – Chocolatier de Miami. As master chocolatiers with over a decade of experience, Susana and Isabel have created a unique space to showcase their award-winning chocolates and sweet creations.
Susana and Isabel make all their chocolates by hand using 100% superior Venezuelan chocolate, with original recipes inspired both by their childhoods and local Florida ingredients. Their chocolates have been awarded prizes by Academy of Chocolate and International Chocolate Awards, as well as a Snail of Approval from Slow Food Miami. As Cacao Art, the Garcia Nevett sisters were named one of South Florida’s Food 50 by The Miami Herald and the Indulge 25 from Indulge Miami.
Creative Pairings from Garcia Nevett:
Zak’s Chocolate is a local, award-winning small-batch craft chocolate maker and an artisan chocolate shop. They are one of a small number of chocolate shops that makes 100% of their own chocolate. They also use only ethically-sourced cocoa beans. Owners Maureen and Jim Elitzak love chocolate and the amazing natural flavors of fine cacao varieties. What started as Maureen’s home hobby now allows them to share their passion at their small production/retail shop in Scottsdale, Arizona.
It’s your turn!
Do you prefer eating chocolate on its own or paired with coffee, wine, or tea? What are your favorite chocolate flavor combinations? What collaborations have you enjoyed? We would like to hear your views! Tell us in the comments.