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Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Beer & Spirits Chocolates: Taste Testing Sweets with a Kick

Posted By on Tue, Apr 10, 2012 at 10:00 AM

L to R: 2 Socola, Vice: Dark Knight, Lucky, Blackbird, Black Jack. - BEN NARASIN
  • Ben Narasin
  • L to R: 2 Socola, Vice: Dark Knight, Lucky, Blackbird, Black Jack.
We recently reviewed Coco Delice's beer and booze-infused truffles, and now two more of our favorite chocolate artisans have turned up with beer and spirits in their sweets. Vice Chocolates' 2012 Lush collection features a beer, a whiskey, and two wine-based truffles. Socola, meanwhile, has added The Inevitable Edible, made with Moonlight Brewing Co.'s Death & Taxes to complement their existing Stout Beer truffle, made with Guinness.

Here's how the boozy bunch tastes out:

Vice - 2012 Lush Collection

Lucky - Linden Street Black Lager Beer (TOP PICK)
Thick, dense, lush, and delicious. Best beer truffle we've had to date. Hearty and rich with a touch of salt sparkling up the flavors and a crunchy topper grain adding a tiny bit of texture. It feels luscious in the mouth, ganache thick, and the overall experience is almost warming. We felt content on finishing.

Dark Knight - Eno Wines Syrah

Lush with a sparkle of cherry notes and the tiniest touch of the vegetal to the rear -- not in a bad way -- like a bright orange pepper.

Blackbird - Merlot

There's a tiny note of alcohol in a warming way. If a chocolate could eat "hot," in the way one describes a high-alcohol wine, that would describe this one. Not off-putting, just obvious. The Merlot lends somewhat intense flavor notes as well.

Black Jack - Whiskey
You get a note of the whiskey on the nose before the flavor hits your tongue. The first few chews are all about the chocolate, but the whiskey comes fast behind, like a shot as a chaser. The flavor is bright, clean, and obvious, finishing lightly caramelized as the whiskey and chocolate flavors go from separate tracks to a marvelous merge. A boiler maker of hot chocolate and a shot of whiskey.


The Inevitable Edible

A bit powdery, dry, almost like a not-too-moist brownie. Dense and rich but without the lushness of the Vice, or some of Socola's other truffles. A bit earthy, almost to the herbal, with a no tiny note of anise and a whiff of the spirit.

Stout Beer 
A bit more lush with a tiny note of cherry. Again, a bit dry to crumbly.

While it has no spirits or beer in it, we'd do you a disservice if we didn't give you  one other option from Socola tasting, their single origin Vietnamese chocolate truffle. This is what chocolate is all about, and the flavors do remind us of a beer, so.....

72% Single Origin Vietnam
Thick, lush richness. Notes of cherry in the chocolate offset with a heartiness in the ganache. A deep contentment of almost earthy flavor, like a thin headed mug of Guinness, fulfilling and dense.

Vice Chocolates are available online and at the Oakland Temescal Farmer's Market on Sundays from 9am to 1pm.

Socola truffles are available online or at DarTealing Lounge (470 Third St.). 4 piece box $10, 12 piece box $25.

Contact Ben Narisin at . Follow us on Twitter: @sfoodie, and like us on Facebook.

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