This past Saturday, twenty-seven people gathered at the Pindar Wine Shop in Port Jefferson to sample the latest collection of fine wines, accompanied by an array of decadent Chocology Chocolates and award winning Fat Ass Fudge. Chocolate and wine! What more could you ask for on a Saturday afternoon?
The event, of course, was a great success. The Pindar Wine Shop is cozy, intimate and comfortable: the perfect venue for wine and chocolate pairing. Our guests had a fondness for both fine wine and fine chocolate, making the event both tasty and educational.
Before the tasting began, we discussed the key points of similarity in wine and chocolate.
Melissa Martin Director of marketing and hospitality at Pindar organized the event and Jenna and Jenny at Pindar, then presented the wines to be tasted. Linda Johnson, owner of Chocology, served truffles and fudge (on a frozen salt block). (What is a salt block? We’ll tell you more about that next week).
Since no two people’s taste buds are exactly the same, discerning which wine will go with which chocolate can feel like a daunting task. There really is no wrong way to do a tasting though. If the flavor pairings work for you, then we say go for it! There are, however, a few guidelines that can help you get the most out of your pairings.
Most everyone agreed that the favorite pairing on Saturday was the Pythagoras Merlot along with our 88% dark chocolate ganache. We also had great success with these:
The whole experience of pairing fine wines with fine chocolate was exhilarating. We look forward to more pairings at the Pindar Wine Shop! Thank you Pindar for providing a wonderful venue as well as the beautiful wines.
p.s. We are also excited to mention that Melissa Martin is also an author. Her book, Harvest Road, captures the beauty of the Long Island wine country and the intensity of a mysterious love affair. We loved it and can’t wait to read her next novel!
Want to do something fun, tasty and educational with the kids this summer? Well, grab these simple supplies and get outside for a science project that will have your kids coming back for s’more!
DIY SUN S’MORES
In this Chocology Kids Project you will learn about:
Energy, Solar Power, Sun, Heat/Melting Point, Cooking
Graham crackers, mini-marshmallows and a chocolate bar or (Fat Ass Fudge!).
Scissors, Ruler, Glue Stick, Plastic wrap, Tape, A Sheet of black paper, A wooden skewer or pencil, Utility knife, Aluminum foil, 2 thermometers
A Warm, sunny day—preferably 85 degrees or warmer
Please read ALL of the steps carefully before cutting. Adult assistance is recommended for the use of utility knife. Also, use caution when cooking with the solar oven. It can get quite hot (sometimes up to 200 degrees)
BUILDING THE OVEN
Clean out the pizza box.
Use your ruler to draw a rectangle on the top of the lid, about 1 inch from the sides.
Ask an adult to help using the utility knife (and the ruler as a straight edge) to carefully cut along 3 sides of the square, leaving the side that runs along the hinge of the box uncut. Cut all the way through the cardboard on those three sides. Once your 3 sides are cut, fold the flap (near the hinge of the box) back slightly along the attached side. Prop the flap open with tape. Lastly, cover the inside of the flap with foil,(leaving the shiny side of the foil facing out) securing with glue or tape.
Cover the opening made by the flap (in the lid) with a layer of plastic wrap. Attach the plastic wrap to the opening's edges using shipping tape or duck tape. Make sure there are no holes in the plastic wrap and that all of its edges are completely attached to the lid. No openings please!
Line the inside of the box with aluminum foil (shiny side out) so that when you shut the box the entire interior is coated with foil. It is easiest to do this by covering the bottom of the box with foil first and then covering the inside part of the lid (don’t cover the plastic wrap!) with foil. Glue the foil in place.
Glue or tape a sheet of black paper to the bottom-center of the pizza box, on top of the foil. This will act as your solar oven's heat sink. How do you think it will help cook your food?
Lastly, use a wooden skewer or pencil (and some tape) to prop the solar oven's lid up, at about a 90-degree angle from the rest of the box.
Think about this:
Let’s Make S’mores!
Before you begin, go check your weather app to see what the temperature is outside. Is it over 85 degrees? Then let’s get cooking!
Place your chocolate and mini marshmallows between two graham crackers.
Place your S’mores inside of your solar oven
Take your oven outside. Be sure to place your oven in a place in a sunny place, taking care to position it to where the sunshine will refect from the foil on the flap into your box.
Check your box every 15 minutes to see if the chocolate and marshmallows have melted. BE CAREFUL! It might just be a pizza box, but you’ve made this into an oven! IT’S HOT!
Bon Appétit! Enjoy your Sun S’mores!
Think about this:
What Is Going On?
Solar Ovens convert sunlight to energy. That energy is retained for cooking food. Although there are all kinds of solar cookers, they all have similarities. For instance, many solar ovens have at least one dark surface to attract sunlight. If you’ve ever worn a black shirt on a hot summer day, you’ve probably noticed that dark colors get very hot in the sunlight. This is because dark colors hold more solar radiation than light colors. The heat absorbed by your dark paper is transferred to the food, which speeds up the process. Most solar cookers also have reflectors, which direct sunlight toward the dark cooking surface and transparent tops that let in sunlight, trapping the heat inside the cooker. Try cooking hot dogs inside of your solar oven and see what happens!
Did you have fun with this activity? We hope so. We encourage you to try it again with different variables. Here’s some to try:
Be sure to check our blog for more fun chocolate activities to do with the kids! Learning should be fun!
Special thank you to our client Terri Palmer for sharing her one of her favorite customer service tips and her Chocology story in this great blog post. Terri is a Real Estate Agent in the Dallas, Texas area.
Being a real estate agent. People often say to me, "So you are in Sales? I say, "No. I am in the Service Industry!"
There is so much more to real estate than a closing table. All agents are required to stay abreast of legal and ethics issues ñ contract law and such. The fresh-out-of-college agents, has also brought the real estate market into a more techno-savvy industry but also it has brought a plethora of competition.
So how to differentiate from others? Service! How you service the client and their experience is what will truly be remembered. My goal is to not only secure their dream home but also to make the whole experience a warm, exciting memory.
One differentiator is the last memento to the home buying experience - the closing gift. Home buying enlightens all the senses with new discoveries, a warmth and new start to life! To enhance this experience I always send a box of artesian chocolates from Chocology Unlimited.
Chocology Chocolates are a gift within a gift! You know like receiving a blue or red box (Tiffany or Red Envelope); you get excited before you even open the box! The same can be said for Chocology Chocolates as they are beautifully packaged. I personalize my Chocology box with either a picture of my new homeowners or a picture of the home as the top liner to this enticing "box." But the picture does not get viewed for long before the smells of the box just envelop you!
A warm and tasty memory to an exciting new chapter in your client's life! It's all about the service.
Terri Palmer (An always pleased Chocology client)
Ebby Halliday Realtor: Plano, Texas
Often times I’m asked, “How did Chocology come about? What made you want to work in chocolate?”
I’d love to say, I’ve dreamed of becoming a chocolatier since I was a babe. I’m afraid my story is a bit more meandering than that, though.
While I loved working in the kitchen with my mom as a girl, the thought of working professionally with chocolate never crossed my mind. I was a late bloomer and marched to the beat of a different drum than most. I was late by most standards to marriage; late to motherhood. But one thing that was always apparent was my desire to help people. To make them feel good about themselves and the world. My joy was to bring a different perspective to those around me and to make the world a little brighter; A little sparklier; A little more fun.
When I started out in the corporate world, I rarely had a traditional position. My desire to help people must have been evident. My employers always knew I genuinely cared and would do the job well. I was the first Senior Customer Service Representative at Sprint and when I moved into sales, was the number one sales representative in revenue retention. I like to think that my success was attributed to my desire to bring great customer service to the table every single day.
After I married and had my daughter my job became being a full time mom. It’s the best job I’ve ever had! My quirkiness and ability to see different perspectives led me to homeschool Madeline, our Chief Creative Director here at Chocology. Bringing joy and fun into her life was now my dream and vocation.
My fathers passing in 2007 had a deeply profound affect on the way I see life and pushed me to look at life from a different perspective yet again. I realized that I had something in me that wanted to be born into the world. But what?
As much as I’d loved the corporate world, it didn’t align with my vision of being a homeschooling mom and I wasn’t willing to give that up. So I began making lists of the things I loved doing, things that even if I never earned money from, were important to me and would give me a sense of making a difference in the world.
What surfaced for me over and over again were my love of family, travel and volunteer work. I was doing these things to some degree, of course, but my heart was yearning for more. Could I take these desires and maximize them to create the life that I was yearning for?
In 2011, I packed Madeline up in the car and we traveled cross-country to meet and interview people who inspired us. We met authors, philanthropist, and others who had made a positive impact on our lives. I still didn’t know what I wanted to do “when I grew up” but was open and willing for something to be revealed.
The road trips became a thing with Madeline and I. We took another one in 2013 to meet several of Madeline’s online friends across the country. And in 2014, it hit me. I love bringing joy to others. Madeline loves chocolate and so do I. Heck, doesn’t everyone? Let’s start a chocolate company!
The rest is history I guess you could say. We boarded a plane immediately for Belgium in early 2014, to go study chocolate from the greatest. It was a great education for Madeline and a great bonding period for both of us. I became a professional chocolatier through classes with Ecole Chocolat and then launched Chocology in September 2014.
Chocology is a blend of all of my past experiences. We value seeing things from different perspectives, promoting education, building strong and lasting relationships, extending kindness and giving back. This way of doing business was built upon the past accumulation of all of the things that were most important to me. And Madeline has been right by my side the entire way. It is my pleasure to serve people through chocolate. Chocolate has a way of bringing the best out in everyone.
When I think about why I love what I do so much, it has nothing to do with the end result. It’s the people we meet along the way, who all have a story. As Madeline often says, “Mama, we meet the best people!” And she is right. We do.
Dreams don’t come true in a day. Sometimes not in a week or even years. My wish is that my story will inspire others to stay true to themselves and keep digging to find that one thing that lights them up. I sure did and am excited to be on this chocolate covered adventure with YOU!
A few mantras I have adopted to help me along the way. Perhaps they’ll become yours as well.
People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.
I am paid in proportion to the amount of service I am to you.
When the student is ready, the teacher appears.
~ Linda Johnson, Managing Director of Chocology
We can hardly believe that Valentine’s Day is right around the corner. And Chocology is prepared with some of the most exquisite and elegant chocolates for our special customers. The Chocology Valentines Collection is here, just in time to celebrate that special someone on February 14.
Chocology chocolates are not your ordinary run-of-the-mill Valentine’s chocolates. Made with the finest ingredients, we never use artificial flavorings or added preservatives. Ingredients are carefully selected to create indulgent taste and texture combinations. Each artisan heart shaped chocolate is a miniature work of art, sure to please even the most distinguished chocolate connoisseur.
Won’t your husband or wife be delighted to receive a box of chocolates prepared especially for them? How about that special grandmother, daughter or friend? Everyone feels special when they receive a box of Chocology Chocolates. Our handmade Fat-Ass fudge offers a wonderful alternative to truffles, for those that prefer a more old fashion twist to their chocolate.
What better way to bring a smile to your loved one's faces than with gourmet chocolates? Pair it with a bottle of their favorite wine (or hot chocolate for the kids) and you have a gift that delights! Visit our website or read on to learn how you can order your special gifts for this special day.
The 2016 Chocology Valentine Collection
Choose from our 4, 12 or 24 piece boxes of chocolate delights. Each chocolate is hand selected and hand packed to your specifications. We’ll even enclose a hand written note upon request.
AMOUR E BACIO - Blended to perfection is this luscious passion fruit and amaretto combined inside a dark chocolate shell.
AgapiKaiFiliaAGAPI KAI FILIA - Rich harmonious blend of buttery caramel and cinnamon, in a milk chocolate shell.
AmouretBaiserAMOUR ET BAISER - Bubbly mix of white chocolate ganache, blended with raspberry and champagne wrapped in a dark chocolate shell.
Amor_y_BesosAMOR Y BESOS - Delectable blend of rum ganache, cinnamon, vanilla vodka and mascaponsa enrobed inside a milk chocolate shell.
Fudge TrioFat-Ass Fudge - Made with Belgian chocolate, goat's milk, goat's butter and love; also gluten free. Choose from flavors such as cappuccino or dark chocolate. Many other flavors available as well.
All orders over $75 will receive free shipping to one destination. Order soon to ensure delivery before Valentine's Day.
Wednesday, February 3rd by noon EST (or until sold out); Shipped orders will be mailed USPS on Monday, February 8th.
Monday, February 8th by 2 pm EST (or until sold out); Last day for Express (UPS 2 Day) Shipping for delivery by Valentine's Day.
Tuesday, February 9th by 2 pm EST (or until sold out); Last day for Urgent (UPS 1 Day) Shipping for delivery by Valentine's Day.
Local Order Deadline - Wednesday, February 10 (or until sold out); available for pick up or delivery (within 10 miles of Port Jefferson) after Thursday February 11th.
If you’re in the Long Island area, be sure to join us for a pre-Valentine’s Day Romantic event at Lavender Fields. We’ll be pairing our Valentine’s collection with fine wines there on Friday February 5th from 4 - 6 p.m. as well as Friday, February 12 from 4- 6 p.m.
We look forward to serving you this Valentine season. Chocology wishes you and yours have a very special Valentines Day.
~ The Chocology Team
Happy New Year! We hope you all enjoyed a fabulous holiday season and got everything your heart desires. Perhaps you received some Fat Ass Fudge in your stocking this year? If so, we have some great information for you!
Over the holidays a question came in through the website, “How do I store the Fat Ass Fudge I got for Christmas?” We love this question and were surprised to realize that we’ve never written about storing Chocology fudge.
Fat Ass Fudge is made with the highest quality, freshest ingredients available. Fresh goats milk and butter along with Belgian chocolate make up this tasty delight. It’s rich texture and taste lends itself to savoring this sweet treat and making it last. So storage is an extremely important issue if you desire to preserve the freshness of your fudge and enjoy it later.
Moisture and heat are never good for chocolate. So keeping your fudge dry and cool when storing is of utmost importance.
The best way to store your fudge is to first package your it securely. You can do this by wrapping it in wax paper. To add an extra level of security, wrap foil around the wax paper. Then, place the bundle in a Ziplock bag being careful to push as much air out of the bag as possible and zip up.
Next, how long would you like to store your fudge? Fudge can be stored on the counter at room temperature for several weeks if wrapped properly. Placing it in the freezer will preserve it for several months. Both of these storage techniques will provide tasty fresh- made fudge whenever you are ready to enjoy it again.
Lastly, when storing in the refrigerator or freezer, be sure to set it on the counter and let come to room temperature before eating. Cold chocolate doesn’t melt in your mouth like room temperature chocolate does. And remember to practice the Art of Tasting Fudge when enjoying this confection. Who knows, you might have leftovers to preserve again!
Do you have any other questions about chocolate? If so, we’d be happy to write about them. Please contact us through the website, in the comments section or on Facebook. We’ll get back to you with answers promptly!
It’s that time of year again! As the old year passes and a new one emerges, many of us spend some time reflecting on the old and planning for the new. We look to the past to help us plan our New Year’s resolutions and determine the goals we wish to achieve.
At Chocology, this time of year gives us a chance to contemplate all that has happened in the past year. We see what worked well and what maybe didn’t go as planned, and start anew.
With diligence, we walk towards 2016 with hope and gratitude for those we have met and for those we have yet to meet. We look to evaluate where we can serve through education and giving back to the community. We determine how we might up the bar when it comes to helping the community and improving our products.
One resolution never changes at Chocology though – to keep our focus on gratitude and service every single year. We are grateful for all that we’ve accomplished in 2015 and are excited for what is to come in 2016. We value our customers and are so delighted to have you on this chocolate journey with us.
Although we have several New Year’s resolutions, rest assured we will remain diligent in our efforts to bring quality chocolate each and every day and show up with a grateful heart always. The heart of Chocology has been and always will be focused on giving, plain and simple. This mission not only helps us grow our business but we believe it also builds a better world, one chocolate at a time.
So, we bless your past and celebrate YOUR future and look forward to the year to come. Thank you for being a part of the Chocology family in 2015. We look forward to a rewarding, fun, prosperous and chocolaty 2016 and wish you all the blessings you desire.
Happy New Year!
~ THE CHOCOLOGY TEAM