The clocks have gone back and it’s hard to make light of the fact that a long, dark winter is on its way. But don’t be too despondent. For when life lets you down, there’s always chocolate. Accordingly, this autumn brings with it enough cocoa-containing news to stop you scowling even when the wind howls and you feeling like you might just do the same thing.
Jaz & Jul’s is opening a Chocolate House
Praise be! Angel is fast becoming heaven for the cocoa nutty. Chapel Market is already home to Damson Chocolate’s flagship shop-cum-factory, and will welcome Jaz & Jul’s Chocolate House in November. Cafe customers can sip signature hot choc and coffee, scoff cakes and bakes, and ogle the open kitchen.
Chocolate Ecstasy Tours unleashes a London Chocolate Map
You might miss the company and commentary of Miss Jennifer Earle and her fabulous team, but if you can’t make it to a guided tour this self-led choc hunt is the next best thing. Co-created with Blue Crow media, this info-packed, fold-out mini map makes it easy to embark on a London-wide truffle shuffle.
Zara Snell wins the Great British Spiced Chocolate Challenge
Budding choc-star and English Rose Zara triumphed at the Great British Spiced Chocolate Challenge, with her ras el hanout-referencing Moroccan Rose chocolate scooping first place. The 19 year-old amateur chocolatier won herself not only a trip to Grenada, but also a solid reputation as One To Watch.
Rococo reveals seasonal specials
Rococo’s principal chocolatier Barry Johnson is adding a soupcon of spice to the company’s autumnal offerings – four fine flavours whose profiles are perfect for this time of year. Take your pick from Pumpkin Pie, tart Berry Crumble, salted Toffee Apple and lapsang souchong-infused Smoked Chestnut.
Fifth Dimension Chocolates: Officially world class
5D’s Russell and Albert are probably two of the nicest men in the world, but they also now officially make one of the world’s nicest filled chocolates. The International Chocolate Awards winners were announced at The Chocolate Show last weekend, and the mango-and-passionfruit caramel ‘Bangkok’ choc took a Bronze.
Damson Chocolate creates a kinda-Caramac
Little is known about this pale and interesting, new bean-to-bar from increasingly exceptional start-up chocolate-maker Dom Ramsay. Glimpsed on Instagram and made in Angel, it’s highly likely to be heavenly. Created for an undisclosed client, this buffalo milk bar is described as ‘almost white’ and ‘tough to temper’.
Chantal Coady & chocolate galore in Good Things magazine
I was delighted to pen and present a four-page profile of Rococo founder, OBE and all-round superwoman Chantal Coady in October’s gorgeously-glossy ‘Cocoa & Spice’ issue of Good Things magazine; along with some sweet’n’savoury chocolate recipes and profiles of some great British makers and their wares.
- To read more about Fifth Dimension Chocolates, click here
- To read more about Damson Chocolate, click here
- To read a review of Chantal Coady’s ‘Rococo: Mastering the Art of Chocolate’ cookbook, click here