Läderach Swiss Chocolate

DSC_5002                                               Not The Matterhorn

DSC_5004                           Läderach Chocolate, Zermatt, Switzerland

I love the Beehive pattern, also the yellow one which reminds me of an egg yolk, but sweeter.

DSC_5021                                     Good Fuel For Mountain Hiking

DSC_4999                                            Jade Mini-Me Mountain

The Matterhorn is a bit bigger at 14,692 Feet high. Some people enjoy hiking the 12,000 feet mountain nearby.

DSC_5013                         18 Bites of köstliche Schokoladentrüffel

DSC_5034                             Midnight at the Chocolate Matterhorn


                          Who Invented The Chocolate Truffle?

1970 – Rudolf Läderach Jr. invents and patents the revolutionary process to manufacture thin-walled hollow balls for truffles, which makes the professional manufacture of truffles significantly easier.

DSC_5026                                           A most excellent invention.



Copyright Jo Jo Kwong 2019. all rights reserved.








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Fancy Food Show 2010

……….bite me……………………..

Fancy Food Show 2010 – a giant 2 story hangar deck full of tasty specialty foods. What exactly are “specialty” foods?  They are gourmet foods made by smaller producers who aim for a higher quality in ingredients, methods and superior taste.  Rarity adds desirability.   These are a few products that caught my fancy this year ……

oils with flavor – coffee olive oil, pumpkin seed oil, peque olive oil for babies, fennel olive oil.

Flavored oils are a great idea for adding an additional layer of flavor to any dish.  You can infuse your own oils with herbs but why risk giving yourself botulism when  it’s much easier to buy it.  Coffee olive oil from Mallafre is one of my favorite finds this year, it really has the essence of coffee, I can see this drizzled on some thin sliced ham or over a steak as an olive oil version of red-eye gravy.  La Tourangelle is famous for the quality and variety of their pure nut oils.  I’ve always loved their Pistachio and Walnut oils, especially on a roasted beet salad.  Fragrant Nut oils will instantly elevate  any dish you make into a gourmet version of itself.  Their Pumpkin Seed Oil is a lustrous brown oil with a strong flavor of pumpkin seeds, putting a spoonful on squash soup adds extra richness.

In Spain, Peque Oliva extra virgin oil is actually marketed as a health food supplement for babies.  It’s grown from the peque olive which yields an oil with the lowest amount of acidity.   The Fennel extract olive oil tastes quite interesting, it’s a line of olive oil flavored with herb extracts.

Dark organic hot chocolate on a stick are shaped like a cacao pod, by Master Chocolatier Christopher Curtin who was trained in France. Beautiful design and excellent flavors like Hazelnut and Milk Salted Caramel. eclat chocolate has a shop in West Chester, PA.

Umami Chocolates by Sweet Marguerites in South Portland, Me.

Oh yes, umami, the “fifth flavor” has found its way into chocolate.   Chocolatier  Margaret Swoboda has created a new collection of  five chocolates based on the principles of umami.  Umami is basically glutamic acid which registers on our tongue as a savory meaty quality. She accomplishes this by adding savory ingredients to make Sweet Potato Caramel, Plum Sake, Sesame Tahini, Green Tea & Ginger, and Malted Bacon.

Rock of ages,  Pink Salt of the earth.

This is why they call it rock salt.  Real Salt is mined from ancient sea beds deposited during the Jurassic period, which means this salt was made before there was such a thing as pollution on our planet. It comes in a fine or coarse  grind,  certified  kosher.  This is good stuff.

Chocolate faces by DeBrand Chocolatier in shades of dark, milk and white chocolate flavored with ginger, chili.  Almost too cool to eat…. almost.

Drawn Butter Sauce. Why are the three lobsters dressed like fred astaire so happy?  because they don’t have to melt any butter!   This drawn butter in a jar was created by chef  Michael Kelly, a corporate executive chef with a PhD in food science, who must have gotten tired of melting gallons of butter for events.  He proudly told me that chef Art Smith (former chef to Oprah)  tasted this and could not tell the difference between this and regular butter.

Amatller Chocolate is a Spanish chocolate co.  established in 1797 near Barcelona.  Unfortunately these chocolate bars tasted like it was from 1797.   It was chalky, brittle and had a flat musky taste.  However, the owner in 1900 was an art lover and commissioned Alphonse Mucha to do the iconic ad posters which are still in use today on the wrappers.

Unwanted pet?    Bookbinder’s is an old soup company that’s been making canned soups since forever.  Back in the 19th century Snapper Turtle Soup was a common dish.  Not so much now….

Blackwater is an inky spring water as black as the water of the River Styx, and it should have stayed there.  It comes in a clear plastic bottle – yup that water is black!  Fulvic acid is supposed to confer some vague health benefit, but I found it difficult to drink something that looks worse than New York City sewage.  Activate water is a bottle of water (image is on their lip balm) with a cap containing vitamin powder.  As you twist the cap, it releases a colorful stream of vitamins into your water.  Finally,  Gum is gum – or is it?? can it bring eyesight to the blind? can it raise the dead ??

This chocolate mouse is seen here fetching his friend, another chocolate mouse out of the box so that they can gorge on these chocolate truffles together.

Billion Dollar Bar tells it like it is. Fancy Foods are big business.  In 2009, gourmet eaters bought $22 Billion dollars worth of specialty foods.  That’s a lot of lettuce !   (oddly, there was no lettuce nor anything resembling a green vegetable at the show)

copyright 2010 Jo Jo Kwong .  all rights reserved.

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Fancy Food Show 2014



August Kitchen of Armonk, NY wants to help you start your Meatloaf. They also make J – BURGER starter.



Sweet and deeply flavored caramel. The New York section had a lot of Brooklyn born companies.



Native to Australia, these micro-citrus Finger Limes are grown by Shanley Farms in Morro Bay, CA. They range from 1″ to 2″ long, and you can get them directly fresh from the farm by mail.

JO JO KWONG copyright


Citrus caviar or group catharsis ?



Chinotto is a type of bitter orange (Citrus Myrtifolia) that grows in southern Italy. This dark soda tastes bittersweet with a strong herbal flavor.  Chinotto is also used to flavor Campari liqueur.



No MSG and No Nitrates.  The texture is similar to dried sausage.



This is the BEST BACON MARMALADE ever !!   because they use bacon that has no Nitrates, it’s not overly salty like the other bacon jams on the market.  EAT THIS is a family owned company in Bucks County, PA. using locally grown seasonal ingredients.

Hand cooked on a stove top by chef Gino De Schrijver.



EAT THIS jams are sold in these awesome WECK jars.  This may be the first artisanal food company to package their jams in these WECK canning jars.  Their Orange Cardamom Marmalade tasted fresh with big chunks of fruit.   Best of all, you can get their mighty jams delivered right to your mailbox. Worth it.



Rambutan Blossom Honey  from Indonesia has an intoxicating floral fragrance unlike any other. Honey I’m home ! 

The Cipo Uva Blossom honey is  made by Africanized aka Killer Bees in the Rain Forest of Brazil.  Don’t mess with the Bees !



CHEF’S CUT JERKY is very tender meat because they use only premium cuts of steak.

It’s pricey, but you do get what you pay for.



 That Wino-nion Jam is really good.  Drunken Monkey Jam is a great name. Based in Brooklyn.



Are these bills or bars?  You be the judge.



Single Serving Belgian Wafel.  They are a bit denser than a cake donut, and have big sugar crystals sprinkled on the outside which gives each bite a small crunch of sweetness.



 SIR KENSINGTON’s also makes a Ketchup.  They’re based in the Meatpacking District, Manhattan.



NEVADO ROSES is a new company from Ecuador that also makes a Rose Cream Liqueur.



 After thousands of bites of cheese, chocolate, iberico bellota ham, cookies, ice cream, a few swigs of this UNDERBERG HERBAL BITTERS will unburden your stomach. If you drink enough, I’m sure it’ll wash away all your bitter memories too.



James Price’s dad bought this 17th century Secret Recipe for French Macarons when he was 11 years old, and James has been making it ever since in his New Hampshire bakery. They named it St. Julien Macaroons in homage to the original from St. Emilion, France.



Made with almond paste, which gives it a moist, chewy crumb, and a wonderful almond marzipan intensity. St. Julien Macaroons is 1 of 3 bakeries in the world that is making these Original French Macarons.

Bakeries in the medieval towns of Nancy, France (Macarons des Soeurs 1793), and Saint Emilion (Nadia Fermigia, successor of Madame Blanchez),  were and are today still making traditional macarons as SINGLE almond cookies – no filling.

Since 1620, the Nuns of Saint Emilion had been baking these authentic French Macarons … 341 years before Pierre Herme was born. 

The colorful modern double-macaron with-a-filling is a  later Paris invention.         A Tale of Two Macarons.



 A recurring theme among these unique artisanal food products that I discovered at this year’s show is that you can now get them easily by mail order. 

I love getting Macarons in the Mail !

Copyright Jo Jo Kwong 2014.  All Rights Reserved.

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50 M Beans

put 50 Madagascar vanilla beans into a bottle of rum


                    simple, efficient conversion

only 1 day later

                                  only 1 day later


vanilla extract is a liquid derivative of the transfer between bean and alcohol


                                 rum multiplier 

el dorado rum is made in guyana, using the last 3 operating wood stills in the world.

plantation rum barbados

plantation rum is made on the caribbean island of barbados. it is distilled and aged in barbados, then shipped to france so that it can be further aged in used cognac barrels at the chateau de bonbonnet.

plantation also makes an overproof rum of 73% alcohol by volume, while barbados has a highest income tax of only 2.5%.  this country has its priorities right.


Copyright 2013 Jo Jo Kwong      All Rights Reserved

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soul of a persimmon

copyright 2012 Jo Jo Kwong

                                             ecclesiastes 10:19

                                                             on the ledge

                                     50 persimmon fund

                             the sweetest one

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I, macaron – Thevenin

macarons from thevenin in paris.  never heard of this bakery, have you?  thevenin is the dark horse of the parisian macaron field of contenders.

2 passion fruit macarons smashed together – my favorite flavor.  these had an intense tart sweetness characteristic of passion fruit. I was pleasantly surprised at how flavorful these macarons were, considering that thevenin is not a famous parisian bakery, nor is it on the foodie macaron map.

chocolate macaron with chocolate ganache filling – smooth and deep chocolate flavor.  great texture.  the coffee and coconut flavors were also excellent. these are 1  1/2″ diameter.

the  caramel macaron had the deep brown nuanced flavor of caramelized sugar which is a simple but great flavor.

pistachio macaron was pretty good, as was the rose macaron, and raspberry macaron.  with each bite i was more and more fond of these macs from thevenin. i could taste and identify each flavor of every macaron without a brochure, unlike most american made macarons which taste only of sugar and not much else.

thevenin bakery is a small boulangerie-patisserie in the 14th, on the south edge of paris. 119 avenue General LeClerc. they make many types of bread, and the fact that their macarons are quite delicious is a good reminder that native foods are usually best made in their native place of origin.  thevenin is not world famous like pierre herme, and yet these macarons were still better than any macarons i’ve had in the u.s.  it’s like the ubiquitous and  iconic new york pizza slice joint, even the worst slice in new york city will taste better than pizza made in any other state of the union.  french macarons in paris are the equivalent of the quintessential new york slice.

in the macaron race, sometimes when you have no expectations, life gives you everything you want.

thevenin has 2 other branches in paris.

related:  Best Macarons – Pierre Herme !

copyright 2010 Jo Jo Kwong.  all rights reserved.

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Moonstruck Chocolatier


eat a snowman, then eat all his friends.  these hefty handcrafted chocolate truffles are by moonstruck chocolatier.   moonstruck is based in portland, OR,  but will ship their chocolates anywhere.

moonstruck box of chocolates

if your life has not been like a box of chocolates then just buy yourself a box!  24 piece wrapped box $50.  a small price to make someone happy. check out all the flavors in this box at moonstruck.

moonstruck chocolates

a box assortment of chocolates shaped like hearts, windmills and seashells.  16 piece box collection $32.  this includes milk chocolates and dark chocolates in various flavors such as caramel, coffee.

tic tac toe

not cupcakes.  these are chocolate truffles shaped and decorated to resemble miniature cupcakes, in cupcake like flavors – strawberry cheescake, sour cream fudge and german chocolate cake.  boxed cupcake truffle collection 4 pieces for $13.  moonstruck chocolatier currently offers their fall and halloween collections of chocolate bats, white chocolate filled ghosts, and a hand painted jack-o-lantern filled with gummy worms for $7.50.

copyright 2009 Jo Jo Kwong. all rights reserved.

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