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If I was allowed just one pleasure in life, and one only, it would HAVE to be Galaxy chocolate. The stuff is pure heaven, plain and simple. Everything pales into insignificance when a girl has a bar to nibble on, she can curl up in front of a roaring fire with a warm and soppy video and just lose herself completely in the smooth delicious creaminess of the most wonderful chocolate ever created. In fact, forget the video, it will only distract from the heavenly taste as you suck and nibble! <ahem>No other milk chocolate touches it, Galaxy is silk compared to Cadbury?s cotton! I?d die for the stuff, in fact, I practically live on the stuff! Taste wise, it?s difficult to put into words, but take it from me, choose Galaxy when you have a chocolate craving and you?ll never go back to any other brand. It?s very smooth, very creamy and light without being too sweet. What?s even nicer is that I find I can eat tons of Galaxy before feeling physically sick, unlike Cadbury?s which has my stomach churning after just a couple of squares. And like all milk chocolates, it contains a natural anti-depressant ingredient so you will always feel better a
fter a nibble, so sod the calories and ever increasing waistline! Get your laughing gear round this girls instead! So what about the nitty gritty then? Galaxy is made by Mars, you know, that very well known company that make?erm?.Mars bars! It?s a straightforward bar of milk chocolate and comes wrapped in a simple brown wrapper. A chocolate coloured one in fact. So there?s a bit of a clue to its contents even before you start to peel away to reach the delights inside. It?s wonderful too as a cooking chocolate to be used when making desserts as it melts beautifully without the ingredients separating. As long as you melt over a very gentle heat of course! And it flakes and grates wonderfully too so can be sprinkled on top of ice cream and other puds. It comes in various sizes too, starting at 50g for the smallest bar and up to a whopping 400g at Christmas. This has always seemed unfair to me, huge whoppers should be available at all times of the year, I like my whoppers! ;O) Cost wise, it?s on a par with Cadbury?s but maybe slightly more expensive. An average 150g bar costs around 79p, the smallest bar around 30p. Money well spent in my opinion. :O) Anyone who hasn?t tried Galaxy really doesn?t know what they?re missing. It?s pure heaven in a bar. Try some, but keep your mitts off mine, OK?!
You can only buy this speciality chocolate by mail order. It is very rich and contains lots of cocoa which gives it a strong taste. Valrhona Jivara costs £2.50 for 75 grams and it contains 41% cocoa. If you are a real addict try Guanaja which has 70% cocoa. This one is so rich that even I couldn't eat more than a couple of pieces and I'm a seasoned devourer of just about any kind of chocolate bar. It is just too much for me! If you want to purchase Valrhona chocolate you need to contact the 'Chocolate Society' (Telephone them on : 01423 322230). They do charge for delivery and packing but I couldn't find a scale of charges anywhere. They do say that it is a minimal charge though. This is a real chocoholic's treat but I must admit that I found it quite sickly. Two pieces of the Guanaja with all its cocoa was enough to make my stomach think it had been eating chocolate bars all day. Not my idea of an everyday bar but nice for a treat if you like the very strong, rich, dark taste.
If you like a rich chocolate a bit classier than the normal run of the mill shop bought slabs then you must try Valrhona. There is a lot of cocoa in this delectable chocolate and it has that mouth watering drooling taste to it. It is slightly more expensive but who cares it’s the chocoholic’s dream. Valrhona’s Jivara £2.50 for a 75g slab contains 41% cocoa butter and tastes divine. If you are a really dark chocolate person then Valrhonas Guanaja is the one for you. It is the same size slab for the same money but has, wait for this……….70% cocoa content. It’s fruity, nutty, woody and extremely strong, and it is just soooo chocolatey. You cannot buy this special chocolate over the normal sweet counter, but you can order it from the Chocolate Society by telephoning 01423 322230. Postage and packing is charged at a very small fee, but a tip from me, Order quite a few bars because you will become addicted and we don’t want you standing on the doorstep waiting for the post man in a state of withdrawal now do we?
Valrhona has a reputation as one of the world’s best chocolates. It has been made in Tain-L’Hermitage, a town in the Rhone Valley, France, since 1925 although for many years it was sold only to confectioners and other chocolate manufacturers. However, since 1986 Valrhona have also produced their chocolate for retail sale. The standard chocolates, available in bars, are Lacte (milk chocolate), Noir (plain chocolate) and Noir Amer (bitter-sweet plain chocolate, with higher cocoa content than the Noir). Valrhona also makes, and is perhaps best-known for, its range of “Grand Cru” chocolates. The use of wine terminology is not accidental: they believe that fine chocolate should be appreciated in the same way as fine wines, and carry this further in their tasting recommendations. You are advised to look at the chocolate, smell it, break it, take a bite, then appreciate its bouquet and notice how long it lasts. The Grand Cru chocolates are made from beans selected and purchased directly from their growers, rather than through brokers. Each chocolate is made using beans from a single region (though not a single grower). They come in four varieties: Jivara (40% cocoa), a milk chocolate; Caraibe (66% cocoa), a semisweet dark chocolate; Manjari (64% cocoa), a dark chocolate; and my personal favourite Guanaja (70% cocoa), a bitter dark chocolate. They are available in three different forms: bars of chocolate, individually-wrapped squares, or perles (small “pearls”). All are attractively packaged, with the squares my personal favourite. They come in a tin, which is really practical as well as a nice alternative to the more usual box, and the individual squares are a better size as this is not really a chocolate you are likely to want (or afford!) to eat a bar at a time. The pearls also come in a tin: this time, a small round one designed to dispense just a few pearls at a time. The
packaging is again lovely, and the idea of small pearls of chocolate is a nice one. However, each ‘pearl’ has a coating (presumably to prevent them melting and sticking together), and although it is flavourless I found that it also stopped me fully tasting the chocolate itself. I would therefore not buy these again. Turning to the chocolate itself, it is wonderful. As soon as you unwrap it, you notice the lovely aromas. The flavours are smooth and intense, and last a long time in your mouth. My favourite Guanaja is bitter, but in a delicious rather than harsh way. The texture of Valrhona chocolates is very different from ordinary brands such as Cadbury’s: it is harder, and feels different in your mouth; it does not melt to nothing in the same way. Valrhona is expensive: the Grand Cru chocolates cost about £2.20 for a bar, £2.50 for a tin of perles, and £4.50 for a tin of squares. However, its quality makes it worthwhile for an occasional treat, and it is not a chocolate you would eat in any quantity at one time (unlike I do with Cadburys!). You can also buy Valrhona chocolates at Selfridges and Fortnum & Mason. They have some delicious and unusual centres such as pear, cinammon and tea, as well as truffles and more standard centres. Again, these are not cheap, but they are comparable to other brands such as Godiva and Neuhaus. In summary, Valrhona chocolate is a lovely treat which I have found to be worth the extra cost. However, I would not recommend the perles.
One of the first European companies to promote the idea of "grand cru" chocolate bars.