Monday, January 14, 2008

Sweet Spot

I am not a chocolate lover. Those words may strike some of you as sacrilegious, but it's the truth. The good news, though, is that the fact that I'm featuring a chocolate shop means it's damn delicious.

This isn't some mass-manufactured, individually-wrapped and nationally shipped Ghirardelli either. The name's XOX Truffles, and their little truffle bites are divine.

Tucked into a little Fisherman's Wharf - North Beach store front at 754 Colombus Avenue, you'd be lucky to accidentally stumble across this place - although that's how I somehow found it. The yellow sign in the window read "rated one of the 7 best chocolates in North America," and my inner foodie was intrigued.

XOX specializes in little, bite-size chocolate truffles that come in 27 flavors. Truffles, the sophisticated pinnacle of chocolate making, have been mastered by chocolatier John Marc Gorce. For the traditionalists, the classic amaretto and dark chocolate ones are well suited. Not too sweet, these chocolates are smooth and buttery, a dreamy consistency. But they don't pack the overwhelming sweetness that turns me off of Godiva or Ghirardelli's versions. For the more adventurous, the Early Grey, Red Wine and a l'Orange are worth trying. The flavors are subtle and complement And at 75 cents a bite, you can sample as many as you like.

I may become a chocoholic yet. Let me try the other 22 flavors and then get back to you on that. . .

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