French, the word conjures up some many images; romance, fashion, perfumes, cuisine, art, tourist spots and more. In case you have forgotten, this is another one image – exquisite and popular – Chocolate.
Yes, France is the land of gourmet chocolates standing proud beside the chocolate king and queen, Belgium and Switzerland respectively. France has its own tradition and history when it comes to chocolate making. Chocolate found it way into France in the seventeenth century when Princess Anne of Austria, of Spanish origin, wedded the King of France, Louis XIII. It was initially sold as a therapeutic drink in pharmacies before becoming a popular dessert food.
The French chocolate makers or maitres chocolatiers prefer to unleash their creativity on dark chocolate than on other chocolate types. As we ready ourselves to peek into the world of French chocolates and their best brands, take a short foray into Chocholik.com, a place for fine chocolates.
Five French Gourmet Chocolate Brands
Some of the gourmet brands from France include Michel Cluizel, Valrhona, La Maison Du Chocolat, Pralus and Bonnat.
Michel Cluizel – Noir Infini
Michel Cluizel opened the first family shop in Normandy. Since he uses selected beans and processes the chocolates himself , they retain distinct flavors. Dark and milk bars are produced from a blend of beans. He also sells whole cocoa beans. Michel avoids the use of emulsifiers and while the chocolates are pastier compared to other brands, his products can considered the purest of gourmet chocolates.
Noir Infini is a dark chocolate with 99% cocoa and you really need to love your chocolates extra bitter, to buy it. These 30 g bars have a mix of taste ranging from spicy to sweet. Gift your loved ones the Dark Almond Rocks Gift Box, filled with sugar free, nutty dark chocolates
Valrhona – Le Noir Amer
Valrhona based in the Rhone valley was one of the first to introduce chocolate bars made from same region or same harvest beans. The resultant floral or fruity flavors of the chocolate gives you a glimpse of the region of origin.
These chocolates are known for their smoothness as well as taste. The Le Noir Amer is a bitter dark chocolate with 71% cocoa. It has an earthy aroma and tastes of coffee and fruit with a hint of nuts.
La Maison Du Chocolat – Chocolate Eclair
This French chocolate making factory was founded by Robert Linxe in 1955. Their chocolate éclair, introduced in 1990 are famous and sort after as are their ganaches. They do produce other items such truffles, mediants and bars. These chocolates though dark are not bitter as 62% or less of cocoa goes into their making.
The eclair is a mix of pastry cream and chocolate that nestles in a choux pastry and is coated with chocolate fondant. These are sweet in taste. Try the 18 pc. Exclusive Chocolate Gift Box, filled with truffles in unique flavors including milk mocha, rum raisin and Indian spice.
Bonnat – Madagascar Chocolate Bar
These are creations by chocolate makers Stephane and Raymons Bonnat and made from the best cocoa beans. They use vanilla, soy lecithin among other ingredients in their products.
The Madagascar is a 100 g, bitter dark chocolate bar with 75% cocoa. It has a fruity flavor to it. Isn’t it time to coat your fingers in some lip smacking Spice Up Your Life Assortment containing pralines, almond rocks and a dry fruit cake.
Pralus – Equateur
The Pralus chocolate shop was started in 1948 by Auguste Pralus. The best cocoa beans – Criollo, Forestero and Trinitario are used to make these gourmet pieces. The Pralus chocolates have a unique taste and flavor.
The Equateur Bar is a bitter chocolate with 75% cocoa content. It has an acidic, bitter and fruity taste. Indulge in the Sophisticated Chocolate collection with dark and light chocolates attractively arranged in a wooden box.