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Candy review: Knipschildt Chocolates

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Knipschildt chocolates heart

In my household, we don’t stand on romantic ceremony – I pick my own Valentine’s Day chocolates. So I have no one but myself to blame if I don’t get it right.

This year, I was too distracted to mail-order something in time. I am usually happy to take a rain check on a holiday – if George Washington can move his birthday around, why can’t I? So I was going to order something later.

But they had a big display of these Knipschildt chocolates at Whole Foods. I find it very hard to resist their boxes, covered with rough, colorful hand-made paper. I try to remind myself that I don’t eat the paper, but it doesn’t always work.

So I ended up with this lovely Valentine’s heart. Unfortunately, while the paper didn’t disappoint me, the chocolates did. They are beautiful to look at as well, but after the intense flavors of my recent experiences with Theo and Chuao, these just didn’t measure up.

The first disappointment was that they don’t come with a guide to what flavor each piece is, which I think is a basic requirement for a chocolate assortment. And in some cases the flavors are mild enough that I can’t tell, so some of the following descriptions are guesses.

Ginger, with dark chocolate ginger filling and a snippet of candied ginger on top, is not bad, but mild, almost boiled tasting.

A round dark chocolate with milk stripes has what looks like soft caramel inside but it also tastes oddly minty. Almost like it was a mistake – did you ever order a flavor of ice cream from a shop, and it had been stored next to the mint flavor and had taken on that flavor even though it wasn’t supposed to? Kind of like that. Not an effect that pleases me.

Dark triangle with red swirl has a red filling – strawberry, I think; almost bubblegummy though. Maybe it’s some fruit combination? I think of the passion fruit and raspberry that I’ve eaten lately in other brands – you’d have no doubt what they were even without a label. It seems to me that that’s the minimum you expect of a fruit flavor.

A milk heart has a pale yellowish cream filling – I can’t figure out what flavor this is supposed to be; same with a tall squarish dark with a dark filling.

A round dark rolled in crushed pistachios has a white pistachio filling – not a nut I’ve seen much of in chocolate collections. It’s not a bad idea, but it’s kind of greasy tasting.

A white and red swirled heart with dark chocolate filling tastes like the coating clearly has rosewater flavoring. This is surprisingly exotic for this collection. I love rosewater in milky desserts, but I don’t find it to be that great a combination with chocolate; the flavors don’t seem enhance one another.

A dark chocolate dodecahedron had a filling like marzipan but softer, and again, milder in flavor than real marzipan. Like the pistachio flavor it seems almost greasy – like it’s got so much fat that it dulls the flavor.

A mint filling tastes like those mint candy patties, but milder. This is the only one that’s not pretty – it’s round with chocolate/greenish/reddish/white chocolate swirl coating that ends up a very unappetizing color combination.

The chocolate itself is of good quality and mostly of good texture – I don’t like coatings that are too hard and snappy. But not a single one of these fillings impressed me.

On their website, they say that these chocolates are made with all fresh ingredients – but they also say that the shelf life is four months. Other artisan chocolatiers, in my experience, tell you to consume their product within something like a couple of weeks. Does this mean that this product might have been older when I got it? Or does it mean that they aren’t worried because the chocolates just don’t start out with the same intense flavors that might fade over time? In any case, I think maybe I’ll use that as a guide in the future – it might be a better bet to buy my chocolates from places with a definition of “fresh” that’s less than several months old.

I am sorry, Knipschildt – I want to love you, because I want to have a collection of your nice little paper-covered boxes. But this was a big disappointment. And there are enough reasons that Valentine’s Day can be disappointing – we ought to at least be able to rely on our chocolate, you know?

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One Response to “Candy review: Knipschildt Chocolates”

  1. 1
    Sera says:

    I felt the same way about these. Great eye candy, but not mouth candy. :P

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