Taste: Sweet Story
“A good piece of chocolate is almost like a small story. It’s not about just one flavor,” says Chris Curtin, a master chocolatier who worked in Europe for 14 years before opening Éclat Chocolate, a small retail and production shop in downtown West Chester.
The display case at Éclat holds many potentially intriguing stories. Some are classics, including gianduja (milk chocolates with crushed hazelnut filling), dark chocolate raspberry truffles, and milk chocolate caramels sprinkled with French sea salt. More daring tales are told by milk chocolates with a tickle of fresh ginger and wasabi; dark chocolate squares filled with understated lavender ganache; bittersweet chocolates with saffron-cream filling; and dark chocolates topped with Aleppo pepper from Syria. Curtin’s signature pavé du tour, milk chocolates with a roasted hazelnut paste-caramelized praline center, are literally fit for a king: He learned to make them while working for a shop in Brussels that supplied candies to Belgium’s royal family.
Such luxury doesn’t cost a king’s ransom. You can walk away with a single piece for $1.50. A 12-piece assortment sells for $17.50, and 20 pieces for $27.
>> Éclat Chocolate, 24 South High Street, West Chester; 610-692-5206. Also sold at Fork Etc., 308 Market Street.