The Editors at Realfoodtraveler.com are smitten and that takes some doing.
We’re smitten with Smitten Artisan Chocolates, an artisan truffle maker that uses smooth and creamy chocolate paired with unique flavor combinations that have made us over –the-moon fans. We were introduced to Smitten Artisan Truffles at the 12th Annual Oregon Chocolate Festival held in Ashland where RFT Editor Bobbie Hasselbring was one of the judges. Smitten Artisan Chocolates won a tie with Fera’wyn Chocolates for Best Truffle with their Dark Chocolate Vanilla Bean Crème Brulee Truffle.
Vanessa Holden launched Smitten Artisan Truffles in 2012. She’d long enjoyed pairing chocolate with different wines and used that flavor knowledge to create a line of delectable truffles.
At Smitten, they don’t go for fancy transfers or paints or use a variety of molds. Instead, every truffle is a simple square and features a simple design that designates the truffle’s flavor. However, they don’t use just one base. Depending on the flavor they want to achieve, they might use a coconut milk, coconut cream, or heavy cream base or a combination, which makes some of their truffles dairy free. They also don’t use any preservatives in their truffles, which means you should eat them within two weeks (not a probem).
Our editors sampled several Smitten Truffles:
Limoncello and Crème Fraiche– Those who have travelled to Italy may be familiar with Limoncello, a tangy, lemon-flavored liqueur that comes in both regular and crème (crema) varieties. This delicate truffle tastes just like Crema Limoncello—smooth, silky with a creamy luscious lemon favor. On of our editors’ tasting panel commented, “This is so decadent, it’s a real pleasure.”
Crème Brulee– This truffle features a uber-silky milk chocolate ganache enrobed in a think dark chocolate shell. The truffle offers a nice combo of cocoa and crème brulee flavors that’s both subtle and satisfying.
Brown Butter Caramel– We love the rich, rich buttery soft caramel in this truffle. The brown butter offers a tang of salt to produce a truly heavenly truffle.
Salt ‘N Spice Caramel– Folks who love a little heat will love this one. It’s a combination of liquid caramel and salt with heat that comes on at the end and lingers at the back of the throat. The dark chocolate coating is thin with just the right snap and offers a nice contrast to the buttery/spicy caramel.
Bourbon Caramel + Smoked Sea Salt– Another delightful caramel truffle with deep bourbon flavors accented by smoky barrel aged salt with dark chocolate ganache and enrobed in flavorful dark chocolate.– Bobbie Hasselbring, RFT Editor; photos Anne Weaver, RFT Editor
Smitten Artisan Chocolates are available at their online shop. www.smitten-truffles.com/