Sunday, September 18, 2011

Life is Short...Eat Dessert First!

Jacques Torres, brilliant chocolatier and sign maker

I could not agree with you more, Jacques Torres.  It turns out I basically agree with you about everything, but especially this little gem of a motto.  (I could not have been more excited to take this picture, can you tell???  In fact, this was one of the only publishable photos where I wasn't grinning like a giant dork.  Keri, you're seriously one of the most patient people on earth.  Nothing but love for you.)

I recently had the awesome privilege of visiting Jacques Torres' adorable little chocolate haven in Brooklyn (it's actually in DUMBO--Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass--is that not the cutest thing ever?  But I digress.)  Ever dreamed of visiting Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory?  Well, here's your chance.

Entering Chocolateland (cue the singing angels).
Jacques Torres is a master pastry chef and chocolatier, with thousands of delectable treats to prove it, but his true genius is in the completely charming and almost overwhelming display of chocolateness that literally makes you want to eat or buy everything the minute you walk into the store.  

The building's exterior is plain yet very clever--it's a working chocolate factory, so the windows expose their magical chocolate-making machines.  And the minute you step inside...the wonderful and powerful scent of all things chocolate wafts through the air.  Combined with the gorgeous dark brown and orange color palette and overwhelming displays of all things chocolate, I felt Instant Chocolate Happiness.  Forget a kid on Christmas.  At Jacques Torres, I felt like a kid on crack riding a pony on Christmas. 
Perfectly packaged, delightfully delicious.
Row upon row of any and every imaginable chocolate treat lives in this store--chocolate malt balls, chocolate cheerios, chocolate bark with roasted hazelnuts, candied ginger bars, chocolate chip cookies, hot chocolate, dark chocolate bars, milk chocolate bars, white chocolate bars with almonds, dark chocolate covered get the idea.

[Enter Crazy Chocolate Freak to counter]
Me: I'll take it.
Chocolate Lady: You buy the bark by the pound.
Me: Ok, I'll take 10.
Chocolate Lady: That's a lot.  I think you mean 1.
Me:*pause* Nope.
Chocolate Lady: *blank stare*
[And scene]
I bought a bit of everything.  You know, as gifts.  For others.  Because I'm a giver.   Seriously, I did give some away.  That's the nice thing about chocolate.  Who doesn't like it?  I don't know anyone who would refuse the Gift of Chocolate.
I chose almost one of everything because
variety is the spice of life.  
Here I am in front of the store with my glorious chocolate gift box filled with beautiful, delectable chocolate treats, intended for my co-workers.

Geeking out!  
And here is the above mentioned box that I opened in my hotel room.  I forgot what I had ordered so I wanted to take a peek.   And I then remembered that I wanted to try the Peanut Butter Chocolate Ganache--ummm to die for.  Wish I had bought a whole box of it.  
Life is like a box of chocolates.  (Except I knew what I was
getting since I hand picked each one).

It is a small miracle that 10 of these chocolates actually made it back to LA.  Co-workers, you are welcome. 

Jacques Torres
66 Water Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201

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