Chocolates to warm the cockles

Paul A Young Christmas 2013

It’s apt that Paul A Young‘s signature hue is a rich royal purple – ’cause there’s little doubt that his chocs are fit for kings and queens. I may be just a simple commoner, but I always relish the chance to savour his sweets. Which aren’t, in fact, always especially sweet.

This master chocolatier has a rather cavalier approach to flavour inspiration. From black pudding to tangy rye bread, little is off-limits. But when it comes to making the dream a reality, Paul boasts the precision of a surgeon and the judgement of an acrobat, walking the tightrope-fine line between ‘too much’ and ‘not enough’.

I can never have enough of Paul’s products, and I’m about to judge how dreamy the latest festive collection is in reality. Nice chocolates are wholly appropriate for a midafternoon munch, wouldn’t you say? Ahhh, c’mon, it’s Christmas. I’m tucking in and you can’t stop me.

A little tipple to kick things off, I reckon – the Glenmorangie truffle, whose light, buttery milk ganache warms the throat and the cockles concurrently. What would whisky be without a slice of stollen? I’ve got that full-on flavour in the form of Paul‘s ooey, gooey marzipan truffle, infused with all the nuance of that lovely German log.

Paul A Young Christmas 2013 close up

Whilst we’re in the Christmas bakery aisle, why not try Paul’s mince pie truffle?Aneesh Popat, The Chocolatier, has a similar specimen, rolled in pastry crumbs just like this one. Both are beautiful. And if those two chocolate kings could find a third, I’d bestow them with the gold, frankinscence and myrrh truffle whose super-soft centre I’m currently dipping my finger into.

It wouldn’t be a proper Paul A Young box without one of his cracking caramels. This one’s made with muscovado, festi-fied with orange and cinnamon spice. Those flavours put me in the mind of mulled wine, which is handy, ’cause there’s a boozy, spice ganache by just that name in the box – and this intoxicating chocolate bomb has my name written all over it.

Whisky and stem ginger truffle teases the tongue, the boozy ganache studded with stem ginger. A fruit-and-nut-topped mendiant allows a moment to just enjoy a right tasty bit of dark chocolate decadence, before things go all Willy Wonka again with a sublimely salty-savoury port and stilton sensation.

As you’ll probably gather as you regain your composure after reading about this seductive selection, this is not your standard selection box – by any stretch of the imagination. It’s quality, but it surely ain’t Quality Street. It’s not Terry’s. It’s Paul’s. And, I’m happy to report it’s mine. All mine.


2 responses to “Chocolates to warm the cockles

  1. Pingback: Keen bean Paul A. Young creates whole bean chocolate | Culinary Adventures of The Cocoa Nut·

  2. Pingback: (Not) Christmastime: Mistletoe & chocolate wine at Paul A Young | Culinary Adventures of The Cocoa Nut·

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