Tag Archives: chocolates

Dillsboro Luminaires #WW

Puritan's Pride Vitamins

Friday,  (if you missed that post, then you can catch it here) I mentioned heading to Dillsboro, North Carolina for their annual luminaires. Hopefully, I got the spelling correctly this time. My good blogger pal Janie Junebug who is a stickler when it comes to grammar informed me of my wrong spelling. Thanks, my friend! 😉DSC_5729

It was a gorgeous day ~ rich blue skies and moderate temps in the low 50s; by the time the sun sunk over the horizon it turned chilly fast and there was a light breeze making the air colder.

Earlier in the day, we were in Bryson City. We bought chocolates from two shops: The Chocolate Shoppe an independently owned shop by a husband and wife team. The wife makes most of the candies and the husband with the help of his nephew to run the storefront and Madison’s on Main is a small boutique who sells Maggie Lyon truffles (a chocolatier from Atlanta).  In the above photo, to the left of the church is Dillsboro Chocolates. We bought chocolates from them a few years ago and decided to buy  a chocolate assortment here, too.

Before the lighting of the luminaires, DH and I waited in the car sampling the three chocolates. This is how the contenders stacked against each other:

  • Our least favorite were the Maggie Lyon truffles from Madison’s on Main. The biggest problems the center had little flavor and the outer shell was too brittle. I think they were stale. I’d like to give them the benefit of the doubt and am open to trying them the next time we’re in Atlanta if it’s convenient. They were certainly beautiful.
  • Next in line is Dillsboro Chocolates. Everything tasted really fresh. The truffle centers lacked flavor, the chocolate covered cherries (both white and dark) are nothing special, and the turtles didn’t have enough caramel and were too stiff. The only thing we liked there were the dark chocolate salted caramels. They changed it slightly making the bite-size caramels a lot thinner than the first time we got them. The flavor is good, but we prefer a thicker caramel. The sea salt granules garnishing the top of the caramels are a bit too coarse. A finer grind is needed in my opinion.
  • Our #1 pick is The Chocolate Shoppe. The truffle was a creamy, full-bodied raspberry flavor, the turtles sweet chewy caramel cradled pecan pieces and then nestled in smooth chocolate (milk and dark), the dark chocolate salted caramel was superb in taste and size, the dark chocolate maple nut cream was delectable, and the dark chocolate raspberry cream was our least favor piece. The raspberry was too fragrant to suit our taste.

Disclaimer:  I’m offering my 100% unbiased opinion to my readers and did not receive compensation from any of these businesses. The links provided are solely for your convenience only and I will not get a single penny if you click on them.



Thanks for joining the fun. I hope you’ll decide to visit a few of my favorite #WW shutterbugs link ups!

This certainly isn’t us, but it has gotten down into the upper 20s a few times already and it’s not even winter yet.

winter humor bro in fl

Have a fototastic day!

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The Kennedy Chocolate Taste-Off Challenge #review

Puritan's Pride Vitamins

Last month, I pitched a request to my Facebook friends asking their opinion of what’s the best chocolates they have tried. Most of the responses mentioned chocolatiers I knew and the few I didn’t know I investigated.

Let me begin by saying this review is not a sponsored post and I was not compensated by any of the companies that fell prey to our taste buds. We bought every last sinful bite and no doubt will regret eating too many sweets after Christmas but that’s a post for another time. This write-up is purely FYI.

I knew, since last Christmas I wanted to get Lake Champlain Chocolates. It’s been years! We got a couple of familiar boxes of chocolates that we always liked to try again.

 

Holiday Chocolates of Vermontholiday-chocolates-of-vermont_2 What’s in the box: 4 each Honey Caramel, Green Mountain, Maple Crunch, & Evergreen Mints.

 

 

holiday-chocolate-assortment-30pc_1Holiday Chocolate Assortment 30pc What’s in the box: milk, dark, and white assorted chocolates, including 10 truffles. (Click on the link to get full details)

 

 

Excited to try Lake Champlain Chocolates after many years, my enthusiasm quickly dwindled to discover the once superior quality has slipped. The truffle centers lacked flavor and too fluffy making them more of a melt away chocolate instead of the consistency usually associated with truffles. The other chocolates as well were weak on flavor. It seems like they are skimping on quantity and quality of ingredients, but still charging premium prices for their product. A common flaw I see that’s practiced by many companies. I do have two good things to say about our LCC experience. The box chocolates are beautiful to receive and the chocolate’s (shells only) is satin elegance on your tongue. We have no plans to order from LCC in the immediate future. Maybe, we’ll try them again in two or three years.

The night we place our LCC order, we also bought from a new-to-us chocolate company in Maine, Dean’s Sweets, who specializes only in truffles. Perfect!

We optedboxed8_sm to get the 8-piece Maine Mix collection – link removed because as of 12-28-2016 no longer is available on their site. What’s inside the box: 2 each Maple, Blueberry, Maine Sea Salt Caramel, & Needham.

DS truffles are smaller than most and expensive considering we only got a ¼ pound of chocolates. However, we hoped the taste would make up for the quantity. The quality is good. I wouldn’t say it was exceptional but far better than LCC and of the four flavors we considered the Maine Sea Salt Caramel outstanding. The other truffles failed to meet our taste palette expectations. That being said, will we order from Dean’s Sweets again. Yes, I see another order in our future.

After sampling these chocolates, we decided to order from a very well-known chocolate company,  GODIVA, instead of being molested by Christmas shoppers at the mall. Yeah, me and my personal space issues, right? lol  I’m not gonna lie to you, we placed a sizable order AGAIN. We didn’t discriminate, either. We got dark, milk, and white chocolates ~ truffles and other chocolates. We wanted to try a variety.

Here’s what we wound up with (hey, don’t judge).

Truffles_78278_01

 

Holiday Assorted Truffles 18-piece gift box What’s inside: Cranberry Truffle, Raspberry Linzer Torte Truffle, Gingerbread Truffle, Creme Brulee Truffle, & French Vanilla Truffle. 12.5oz.

 

AOK_190441_0127 pc. Dark Chocolate Gift Box ~ Classic What’s in the box: Dark Caramel Embrace, Midnight Swirl, Dark Ganache Bliss, Double Chocolate Raspberry Truffle, 72% Dark Demitasse, and Mochaccino Mousse Dessert Chocolate. 10.6oz.

AOK_190440_0122 pc. Milk Chocolate Gift Box ~ Classic What’s in the box: Cinnamon Blush, Coffee Feather, Open Oyster, Almond Praline Raindrop, Pecan Caramel Duet, and more. 10.5oz.

 

 

24 pc. White Chocolate Gift Box What’s in the box: Raspberry Star, HAOK_190442_01azelnut Praliné Raindrop, White Ganache Bliss, Twilight Swirl, Cashew Raspberry Caramel Cluster, Strawberry Truffle and other white chocolate indulgences. 9.75oz.

 

 

 

4314-GiftBox_79890_01v1W16 pc. Limited Edition Holiday Gift Box What’s in the box: Mocha Snowflake: Limited edition holiday piece featuring mocha filling in a milk chocolate shell, Mandarin Snowflake: Limited edition holiday piece featuring orange mandarin filling in a white chocolate shell, Dark Medallion in Green Foil: Solid dark chocolate,Milk Medallion in Red Foil: Solid milk chocolate, & White Ganache Bliss: Creamy white chocolate ganache with vanilla in a white chocolate shell. 6.75oz.

What can I say, except Godiva was FANTASTIC like always. Needless to say, Godiva wins hands down easily and you betcha we’ll continue to buy from Godiva!

Pssst… just wanted to throw this out to ya that Godiva has a little promo going on where you can receive a $10 gift certificate for every $50 you spend. This offer expires ends shortly before Christmas and I found out the GCs mailed after Christmas. It’s a nice incentive, especially if you’re planning to buy anyhow. Oh yeah, you can further your savings by going through Ebates. (If you click this link & join with me, then after you make your first purchase I will receive a one- time bonus of $5 and a chance at the $10,000 sweeps.)

I have one more mail order candy review up my sleeve. Come back to see how See’s Candies fairs in the Kennedy Chocolate Taste-Off Challenge.

**images and some descriptive content borrowed from the appropriate sites**

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