There really is no bad or out of season chocolates. We all love those little bite size morsels wrapped in silver foil. However, chocolatiers are now catering to adult palates. They are true artisans of gourmet chocolate that are developing visual and sensual delights. These are not mass produced candies.
The top trends of 2012 are:
1. Dark chocolate combined with super fruits: Dark chocolate in itself has been proven to be "healthy". With its antioxidants it is said to lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol, and help keep the cardiovascular system running properly. To make it even more desirable to health conscious consumers it is being combined with super fruits that also contain these antioxidants.
2. Artisan Chocolates: These chocolates are true works of art. Homemade treasures. They are not the chocolate that is poured into a heart mold and popped out. The cocoa is selected for aroma and texture. It is quality versus quantity. The chocolates are hand decorated or filled with high quality ingredients. Some look too good to bite into.
3. Chocolate covered tropical fruit: Strawberries are not the only fruit for dipping anymore. These gourmet chocolates bring you to the islands. They are sweet and tangy. Varieties include coconut, orange, passion fruit, and guava. You can hear the ocean when you bite into them. You can hear the breezes of a tropical rainforest.
4. Salt in Chocolate: Sea Salt from around the world has become a specialty food. Gourmet chocolate bars, truffles, wafers are all being sprinkled with finishing salts. Salts from all around the world are being used. Pink salt looks beautiful on white chocolate. The flavor is unique that satisfies both the sweet and salty craving.
5. Spicy: Hot! Hot! Hot! Chocolates are combing spicy jalapenos, chili powder, and smoky chipotles to name a few. As you smell the aroma and chew into the creamy chocolate the spice is the last to come. It is an eye opening surprise. You may want to have a big glass of milk on the side.