I heart… chocolate

I heart dark chocolate. Actually, chocolate in general… but dark chocolate has been creeping up towards the top of the list and before I knew it… it had effectively crushed (melted?) the competition.

White chocolate (which really isn’t chocolate at all) had been my favorite ever since my dad came home from New Orleans with chocolate alligators. My sister got the milk chocolate one, and I got white chocolate. I can still see the delicious alligators in their beds of green Easter-basket-esque “grass” and jelly bean “eggs.” (Somehow that image isn’t quite as enticing now as it was then.)

My dad was the only one in our family who would eat dark chocolate. It worked well for him because he was always guaranteed to get all of the dark chocolate pieces from the Hershey’s fun-size bags of chocolates (you know… the ones that come with milk, dark, krackle, and Mr Goodbar?).

I continued to turn my nose to dark chocolate through the years until I did my college internship a couple of summers ago. I was out in the “field” with my three co-internees, camping and roughing it along the shore of Ross Lake. One of them was brilliant and brought out dark chocolate Toblerone. I haven’t looked back since. White chocolate will always be special to me, but now more for the sake of sentimentality than for my taste buds.

Plus, dark chocolate is good for you! (In moderation, of course… but that really goes for everything.)

If you are a chocolate lover, as well as a wine and other food lover, Ghiradelli has suggestions on how to “savor” the chocolate by pairing their different chocolates with different beverages and food. I thought it was interesting and could be a fun twist to a wine tasting party with a focus on the chocolate instead of the wine! Some of the chocolates even have different kinds of tea suggested… hmm… (I am mentally planning another “gathering” as I write… I’m picturing plates of chocolate with descriptions + pairing suggestions, carafes of hot water, lots of tea, plates of fruit and cheese and bread… ooo fondue!!… I’ll be coming back to this…)

I like it for its flavor. I like its simplicity. I like its versatility. It reminds me of good times, great people, happiness and joy. It is a simple pleasure and an easy way to reward/pamper myself. I like its flair for romance and its bond to women. I like that it has something for everyone, every occasion, every season.