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Barcelona CHOCOLATE


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Hello all,

I will be in Barcelona for an unbrearably short stay in a little over a month. Dining reservations have been made....HOWEVER, I need recomnedations for special wonderful DESERT locales. I've been told the best deserts in the city are in separate shops, not in the restaurants, so I would love to hear your favorites.

But mostly, I've heard so much about a few wonderful chocolate tastings (and chocolate pairings) held throughout the city. I've been warned that some are quite touristy, while others are outstanding. Does anyone have any experience with these? Care to pass on a link or a contact?

Many thanks.

SL1

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It is not entirely true that the best desserts are in shops rather than in restaurants. Most shops can do pastries but for composed desserts, have to be in restaurants. For great designer pastries and chocolate, go to Oriol Balaguer in Pl. Sant Gregori Taumaturg.

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I really enjoyed Patisserie Escriba, Cacao Sampaka, and the hot chocolate at La Granja (Carrer Banys Nous, 4). There is also a churreria a few doors down from La Granja. Unfortunately, didn't make it to Oriol Balaguer, Espai Sucre, or bubo.

"I'll put anything in my mouth twice." -- Ulterior Epicure
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I'll second Cacao Sampaka, great chocolatier which I believe is owned by the brother of Ferran Adria. They have plenty of little treats to take home with you too!

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Hello!

I live in Barcelona and have a friend who attended the Espai Sucre pastry school. She knows EVERYTHING about sweet stuff in Barcelona so I asked her to compile a list of the best places for chocolate in Barcelona. I have pasted what she said below. Also, I just started a web site (www.barcelonabites.com) dedicated to Spanish cuisine and I have listed some resources there as well (related to culinary classes and seminars in Barcelona). I don't know if you speak Spanish but if so, it might be fun to take a short one or two day pastry course?! Anyway, if you need any help or have more questions, feel free to send me an email. I might not be able to help but I'll try!

Johanna

PS. Another great culinary resource for Barcelona is the Know Food gastronomy bookstore in Gracia (www.knowfood.es). Sergi the owner speaks perfect English and is always giving me recommendations on where to go and eat yummy things!

Barcelona Chocolate Taster’s Guide

Top Choices:

Bombones Blasi,

C/Alfonso II (Sant Gervasi)

Dark chocolate and milk chocolate cat’s rongues never leave a bitter aftertaste,

have a velevety texture, perfectly balanced

some of their bombones are exquisite

Canal (Sant Gervasi)

The pasteleria and café: c/Muntaner, 566 (it’s way up near c/Bonanova)

Everything is excellent, their Horchata is excellent too

Pasteleria only: c/Cavet, 15 (near Plaza Francesc Maciá)

Bubó (Chef Carles Mampel)

c/Caputxes, 10 (Borne)

design of his pastries is exquisite:

http://www.thequenelle.com/2009/12/i-apologize-for-delay-in-posting-it.html

http://www.bubo.ws/

café: c/Bruc, 150 (Eixample)

Enric Rovira (Corts)

Avenida Josep taradellas, 113

http://www.enricrovira.com/

his packaged chocolates are available in most gourmet shops

Oriol Balaguer

Plaza Sant Gregori Traumaturg, 2 (Sant Gervasi)

http://www.oriolbalaguer.com/

his packaged bombones can be found at Casa Gispert

Cacao Sampaka (Eixample)

Café and shop

c/ Concell de Cent, 292

created in part by Albert Adriá

Their Aztec blend of hot chocolate is a must for the die hard chocolate lover

even in the summer. Have it with melindros (lady fingers) There’s enough in

one serving to share

Baixas

c/Muntaner, 331 (Sant Gervasi)

Rambla de prat, 27 (Gracia)

http://www.baixas.es/

Foix

Mayor de Sarria, 57 (Sarriá)

http://www.foixdesarria.com/

This place isn’t top choice for me for chocolate but their pastries and bread are excellent

They have an interesting and delicious nutmeg laced custard filled pastry called a Llobet, which I’ve never encountered in any other pastry shop

At xmas time they make an exceptional filled marzapan loaf called Pan de Cadiz and crema quemada which has it’s own reputation

Casa Gispert (Borne)

c/Sombrerers, 23

http://www.casagispert.com/

This isn’t specifically a chocolate shop but a dealer in dried fruits, spices, grains.

They are master nut toasters and have the oldest nut toasting oven in the city. They’re known for high quality and they supply many of the best restaurants in BCN. They make some of their own bombones, one is a chocolate covered fig, and the catanies which are chocolate covered almonds or hazelnuts, and choclate covered candied oranges.

They carry a selection of Enric Rovira and Oriol Balaguer chocolates.

Second Choices:

Escribá

La Rambla, 83

http://www.escriba.es/

very good chocolate croissants and pastries

This is one of the oldest bombonerias with a tradition of good quality

Xocoa

This became a franchise about 6 years ago. The original shop was on c/Peritxol, 11.

The quality went down significantly. They have shops all over the city.

The chocolate is exposed to air and loses it’s quality. They must manufacture massive amounts to stock all their shops. Once you get used to eating great chocolate in Barcelona, you notice the difference. I think they’re intended market is tourists.

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WOW. Quite a list. thank you very much. Now my wife and I wish we would be ibn the city for longer!!!

I love dark chocolates, and creative mixes of tastes/texture, and she loves milk chocolates of all types. We have so many places we want to visit, and will probably makes one full day our "chocolate day."

Thank you again, everyone!!

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  • 4 weeks later...

I've tasted and reviewed a whole slew of chocolates of assorted chocolates, and I have to say, Oriol Balaguer is still to this day one of my two favorite chocolatiers in the world when it comes to boxed chocolates. Not only does he have some of the most unique flavors (imagine Pop Rocks, Corn Nuts, and Olive Oil), but the design is to-die-for, as every single piece comes in a sleek sushi-like shell. Moreover, he sells his decadent seven-layered (I think) chocolate cake, the dessert that won him the World Pastry Championship. It's basically a dark chocolate lover's fantasy. I was, however, not impressed at all by the one chocolate bar of his I ate, and I would not recommend most of the other treats in the shop, which I find to be overpriced in general.

And that's where I'd turn to Cacao Sampaka. Cacao Sampaka doesn't really match the elegance or flavor of the bon bons at Oriol Balaguer, though it has some interesting flavors, but it does have some of my favorite chocolate bars of all time, with flavors like White Chocolate with Roses and Strawberries as well as Milk Chocolate with Jamaican Pepper. It also has some of my absolute favorite hot chocolate in the world and some amazing dark chocolate ice cream.

I unfortunately didn't get to try the other chocolatiers, but I'd take Oriol over most anything in America or Belgium, where I've done most of my tasting.

Edmund Mokhtarian

Food and Wine Blogger

http://www.thefoodbuster.com

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