Are you in trouble with your spouse? Do you think a box of chocolates will get you out of the doghouse, and have you messed up so badly that a simple Russell Stover collection will not do?
Perhaps some Amedei Toscano Champagne-Filled Black Truffles with edible gold flakes would do the trick. Fifteen truffles in a handmade box adorned with 450 Swarovski crystals can be yours for only $294. That price does not include the cost of plane tickets to London to pick them up at Harrods.
Believe it or not, that is not the most expensive chocolate option you could find. There are multiple chocolatiers who produce high-end chocolates for discriminating tastes and fat wallets.
Since today is National Chocolate Day, we wanted to know: What can make chocolate so incredibly expensive?
- Craftsmanship – Fine chocolates are not mass-produced, and are usually handcrafted. With smaller batches, a chocolatier can have greater control over the process and create unique and interesting variations that would be difficult to produce at a larger scale. The Grand Cru selection from Pierre Marcolini at $102.50 is reportedly created using the same detail-oriented techniques used by master chefs.
- Exclusive Ingredients – High-end chocolatiers may limit their supply to a very specific type of cocoa bean. The Good and Evil chocolate bar uses only Premier Cru Superieur beans from rural Peru, which are some of the rarest cocoa beans available. The end product sells for $18 for a 75-gram bar. The Amedei Porcelana at $90 gets its name from the nearly translucent, genetically pure strain of cocoa bean used to produce it.
- Unusual Ingredients – Vosges Haut Chocolat is known for interesting and unusual ingredients such as Mexican chilis, wasabi, ginger, cinnamon, and bacon. Their selections sell for $69. The $120 offering from Richart includes a greater variety of citrus-based and herbal/floral flavorings.
The House of Grauer’s Aficionado’s Collection targets chocolate that complements the taste of smokers with a $210 collection including options such as Turkish Star Anise, Kona Coffee Beans, and Matcha Tea from Japan.
- Expensive Auxiliaries – Edible gold is often used as a component or as part of the presentation. DeLafee offers a $508 chocolate collection with chocolates made from special Ecuadorian cocoa and garnished with edible gold.
It is even possible to buy a gram of edible gold directly from DeLafee, although goodness knows what you would do with it. Perhaps you could sprinkle some on your cornflakes made from hand-selected Midwestern grains specially processed by the Château du Kellogg.
- Branding and Marketing – Like it or not, perception plays a significant role. Hershey’s could decide to make an extraordinarily expensive and tasty chocolate and do it quite well. Unfortunately, it would likely not sell well because Hershey’s does not have the reputation as a high-end chocolatier.
Who wins the title for the most expensive chocolate? Oddly enough, it is not the one labeled “The World’s Most Expensive Chocolate” bar, the Wispa Gold Chocolate from Cadbury wrapped in a leaf of edible gold. The current title-holder is the Chocopologie Chocolate Truffle from Knipschildt Chocolatier at $2,600. Composed of 70% Valrhona dark chocolate and a vanilla base, they are all made-to-order.
While these are fun to think about, none of the chocolates above are likely to get you out of trouble; they are more likely to get you in deeper trouble once your spouse finds out how much you spent on them. You might have better luck with a simple Hershey bar and a sincere apology.
If all else fails, send the truffles from Harrods and wait for a few weeks to book your return flight.