I was delighted to receive an invite to Charbonnel et Walker’s blogger event at their flagship store in New Bond Street. Not only was this my first blogger event, it was hosted by my favourite chocolatier and one of my all-time favourite brands. Some may say I am a little obsessed, even as a student and an intern on minimum wage I found myself spending up to £30 at a time on Britain’s finest chocolates. Charbonnel hold the royal warrant for supplying the Queen, so their chocolate is certainly good enough for me!When I arrived at the event last Thursday I was greeted with a flute of bubbly accompanied by a plateful of champagne truffles, which awakened my senses and left my craving more. I got chatting to a lovely group of ladies who were also bloggers, many of whom wrote about food. We discussed everything from our favourite bakeries to ways in which we try to keep the weight off. Adam, the store manager told us about the history of the company and how the hand-finished chocolates are made. Charbonnel’s latest collection is inspired by Jamaica and includes real Jamaican cocoa powder. Unfortunately, I didn’t get to sample the new collection which is a shame as I would have like to have compared how the Jamaican cocoa tasted.Some of the bloggers had brought along cakes that they had baked using Charbonnel et Walker chocolate. To begin with, I had a slice of Bees Loves Teas Rosewater and Raspberry cake. I am personally not a fan of floral tasting food so I was a little hesitant to try this cake but I was pleasantly surprised. The cake was incredibly fresh and moist, helped by the soft fresh raspberries hidden throughout the tender sponge. This gave it a sharp taste which went well with the sweetness of the chocolate. A rich layer of smooth chocolate icing, topped with English Rose and Violet creams created the perfect finish.As you have probably gathered, I don’t bake. In fact, I don’t think I have ever baked. The reason being is that would end up eating the whole cake myself and I’m far too impatient to cook. I couldn’t believe my senses when I tried Kate Makes Cake White Chocolate and Strawberry cake, it was amazing, and certainly better than many I’ve tried in various cafes/restaurants. The strawberry flavoured sponge was incredibly dense, but not sickly, and tasted more like a condensed jam roly poly. Sweet white chocolate icing separated the two layers and covered the whole of the cake, divine! Kate had beautifully decorated the cake by placing heart shaped chocolate moulds around the edge and a pile of Charbonnel truffles in the middle to form an attractive centre piece. The cake was such a hit, when I returned for more the plate was bare.Helping myself to the chocolates, I tried a hard centred piece ‘Caramel Vanille’ which tasted a little like a sweet toffee. It was a Pink Champagne Truffle which initiated my first love of Charbonnel. I’ve tried plenty of champagne truffles across the UK but I haven’t come across one as rich and luxurious as Charbonnel’s. In my eyes, Charbonnel et Walker are truly the best chocolatiers in England and their small production factory and delicate crafting techniques illustrate why.I would be lying if I said I didn’t suffer from a chocolate hangover the following day but it was totally worth it. I purchased a whole bunch of goodies and shared them with friends, family and work colleagues so they could experience the true quality of Charbonnel et Walker. Once I get my hands on another salted caramel truffle, which is due to be released soon I will be reviewing my top 5 chocolates (all Charbonnel of course!).
This was a wonderful event, incorporating friendly chat, delicious cakes and luxurious chocolate. Thank you Charbonnel et Walker, it was a blast!
Living life, loving cake,