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the chocolate i wish america was known for

May 6, 2010

What I hoped would originally be a post about a few chocolates I tried out awhile back in the States, is probably going to become a bit of a rant.  Pardon the interruption, our regularly scheduled recipe and fun posts will be back shortly.

Every now and again, we have visitors from our U.S. headquarters who come to our Swiss offices.  Inevitably, they bring two things:  1) gossip magazines and 2) candy.  I never pay much attention to the magazines, but I do get excited at the idea of treats brought back to the U.S.  Sadly, I’ve come to realize though, that’s it’s always the same “treats” that are brought over.

Hershey and Mars dominate the opinions of all of my European colleagues, to the extent that uttering the words “We have good chocolate too” is met with scoffs and laughs.  It’s the same with beer.  Budweiser may as well be synonymous with American beer, completely undermining the fact that we have an incredible selections of domestic beer in the USA.

So, in my perfect world, when people think of American chocolate, I would have them thinking of my two new favorite brands:  Vosges and Fran’s.  Both brands I had never tried previously, but had been meaning to and both made me all the more confident in my patriotic chocolate boasting.

Vosges has an incredible selection and I did feel that many of them seemed…well, trendy.  What was interesting though was to try these out with my sister and brother-in-law.  There seemed to be a real divide among the sexes in terms of which flavor came out on top.    My brother-in-law clearly favored the bacon bar.  My sister and I both loved the ginger, wasabi, black sesame  dark chocolate bar.  Either way, I’d put each of these up against a Lindt bar any day of the week.

The next one is a celebrity in and of itself.  Touted as a favorite of Michelle Obama these deliver in every way.  Salt?  Check.  Chocolate?  Check.  Caramel?  Check.  The only complaint that came from my family after eating their fair share was “Where are the rest?”  Sadly, at $12/box of 7, those were the rest.

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