Quintessentially British Chocolate Collections
2010 was a busy year for us and we are excited about what’s in store for us in 2011. Our most proudest achievement for the year was to be the UK’s most awarded Luxury Chocolatier with many of those awards having been given to our most quintessentially British creations. We therefore thought we’d dedicate this blog post to some of our most popular collections that celebrate all things British.
In summer 2008 Marc created “The Great British Orchard Collection”, which was only going to be a limited edition collection for the summer months but has since earned a permanent place within our collections range. It is a tribute to the nation’s best smallholders with each half-sphere-shaped individually hand-painted chocolates being carefully moulded using both highest quality, ethically sourced 71.1% dark chocolate and 40% silky Malagasy milk chocolate. Each is then filled with a luxurious creamy caramel made with pure Hampshire Cream, British Beet sugar and fresh & ripe fruit from British smallholders. The result is a refreshingly clean taste accentuated by the texture of real fruit.
- Yorkshire Rhubarb (2010 GTA Award Winner)
- Kentish Pear
- Sussex Blackcurrant
- Devon Strawberry (2009 GTA Award Winner)
- Scottish Raspberry
- Cornish SeaSalt (which is so popluar that it also has it’s own dedicated box!)
The English Garden Collection
Another collection that was intended as a limited edition collection – a selection of quintessentially English floral caramel cream chocolates which we called ‘The English Garden’ with flavours including Rose, Violet, Lavender and Elderflower. The collection was exclusively previewed during the Chelsea Flower Show in 2009 to coincide with the 500th anniversary of King Henry VIII enthronement, the second monarch of the Tudor dynasty which marked the beginning of our national enthusiasm for gardening, when new concepts of Renaissance gardening began to penetrate into provincial England. With reflections of the formal gardens of the Tudor period to our own contemporary gardens of today, this exceptional collection, which shows the Tudor Rose as its symbol, celebrates a truly unique passion, which has made our nation the envy of the world.
‘The English Garden’ consists of 6 English flavours using classic ingredients from all across our “Green and Pleasant Land” – flowers which we traditionally find in our gardens to some more unusual plants now grown in Britain.
- Rose – the most classic of English flavours;
- Violet (2009 GTA Award Winner) – a traditional floral favourite;
- Lavender (2009 GTA Award Winner) – hand picked by Marc personally;
- Manuka (2010 GTA Award Winner) – Reputed to have medicinal properties it is originally from New Zealand and now thrives in the Tregothnan Estate Gardens in Cornwall;
- Elderflower – commonly found in English hedgerows dividing fields and gardens;
- Heather Honey – not to forget the wonderful work of the bees without which our gardens wouldn’t flourish.
The flower-shaped individually hand-painted chocolates are carefully moulded using both the dark 71.1% house blend and a 43% house blend milk chocolate. Each is then filled with a luxurious creamy caramel made with pure Cornish cream, which has been infused with the English floral flavours.
And it doesn’t end there! Last summer we created a ‘Great British Summer Collection’ (reviewed in an earlier blog) a collection which is exclusively available during the summer months and Marc is continuously looking for and experimenting with ingredients that grow in Britain – ingredients that we can be proud of, that may have been forgotten, or that have been introduced to Britain and now thrive on our home soil.
Kentish Cobnut – For the first time ever the Kentish Cobnut makes its debut in the world of chocolate. This unique hybrid praline caramel in a hand painted 71.1% pure origin chocolate shell, is tastefully presented in “The Nutkeeper’s Collection” of 12 Caramels which also features Provençal Almond, Persian Pistachio and American Pecan & Maple.
Earl Grey Tea Chocolate – As descendants of Earl Grey himself, the Boscawen family have created the ultimate tribute: Earl Grey made with tea grown on their Tregothnan Estate in Cornwall – the UK’s first and only producing Tea plantation. We gently infuse the tea leaves in fresh cream from Tregothnan Jersey Herds, and combine them with our 71.1% Demarquette House Blend of dark chocolate. The distinctive yet subtle flavours of Earl Grey Tea develop gently on the palate with delicate tones of Citrus bergamia rounding off the experience.
And there are many more examples in our range: such as in our fresh Ganache selection the Mead, Caledonian Honey Ganache or the Highland Malt Chocolate. Most recently we also offered a special festive Mince Pie chocolate as part of our Victorian Christmas Ganache Selection.
And finally, whilst many if not most chocolatiers will use cane sugar from far away lands where added sugar is required within their recipes, we only use either Honey or Sugar Beet which grows here in the UK and isn’t effected by the controversy of some sugar cane plantations found around the world.
You can certainly be sure that if ever there was a cocoa plantation in the UK that met our high and strict quality, cultivation and taste criteria, we’d definitely add it to our collection!