A while back, maybe 6 years ago or so, before I became the chocolate snob I am today, I happened to attend Chocolate Show New York. I remember feeling like the place was packed and I spent a hefty ticket price for some small tastes of chocolates, fighting with kids (including my own) and adults for each bite, after all I had to justify my admission price! It was not a comfortable or enjoyable experience and I did not intend to go back. This year, I overheard some people talking about the Chocolate Show and I thought maybe it was time to give it another chance. After all, it would give me the opportunity to find new kosher chocolates that I could enjoy and share with all of you. I’m taking it for the team.
Overall, the show was much better than I remembered. It was crowded, but not the ball pit of hell I had feared. The samples offered were generous and the chocolate cooking demos were entertaining. They even had some nice activities for kids, but you had to sign up early and spend a significant amount of time waiting for your class. As for my chocolate finds, there were lots to satisfy the kosher crowd and even some vegan and parve options, but two really stood out for me and I’m so excited to share them with you.
The first is called the Salt of the Earth Bakery. Okay, so they are not exactly chocolates, but all their baked goods contain chocolate and for my splurge worthy foods, they make the cut. They had the most amazing cookies, brownies, and caramels -- all with a salty finish. Salt is as a big trend among all the chocolate companies and Salt of the Earth really knows how to use it.
The founder of the company and recipe developer, Alexandra, and her husband, who handles the business side, were at their booth passing out samples by the hundreds. It turns out Alexandra is a JoyofKosher fan and when I asked if the chocolate was kosher, she said, “as Jewish day school alumni it was of course a priority for Salt of the Earth to be certified kosher.” In fact, the Circle K helped them find a bakery to manufacture their treats. They started the company with a dream, they brought a cookie to a large store just to gauge interest, when they came back in record time for a large order, they knew this was just the beginning. Now, over a year later you can find them in many local retailers in New York and they hope to get their online sales up and running by the end of the year.
The second company that I really liked was called Gnosis Raw Chocolate. If you have read any of my other chocolate lover articles you already know that I recommend eating 70% and greater cocoa chocolates so that we can indulge without (quite as much) guilt. Gnosis was founded by a like minded chocoholic and they offer a whole line of chocolate bars, truffles and cocoas that aims even higher by using raw chocolate, which is when the cocoa beans are roasted at a much lower temperature to preserve even more nutrients. They also fill their bars with healthy foods like goji berries and all sorts of roots, each bar has its unique twist. Gnosis is vegan and certified by Earth K.
I know I said there were two, but this one also deserved a mention. I mean look at this pictures. If you are looking for a new idea for a gift this holiday season, Rogue Confections does it right. It is artwork on chocolate, almost too gorgeous to eat… almost. They make edible designs based on vintage patterns on all their quality chocolates. These are certified Star D and would make the perfect host or hostess gift this Chanukah.
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Main image courtesy of the chocolate show, all other images form the companies.
Disclosure - I attended the chocolate show free of charge as a member of the press.