When you were a kid, you greedily filled your pillow sack or plastic pumpkin with as much candy as your little fists could grab from neighbors’ bowls. Then you went home, compared piles with your friends and siblings, did some trading and went to chocolate-coated, caramel nougat town.
But nothing gold can stay, and now that you are over five feet and your metabolism is slower you can’t get away with knocking on neighbors’ doors with a perky “trick-or-treat” nor with blissfully bingeing on Tootsie Rolls and Kit Kats. Sorry. It’s time you knew.
But that doesn’t mean you can’t treat your sweet tooth this Halloween. You just have to be more cultivated in your tastes and more health conscious in your candy: choose gourmet chocolate. If you’ve ever seen the romantic Chocolat with Johnny Depp, then you know that one decadent adult indulgence can lead to another.
Plus, dark chocolate is full of antioxidants, lowers blood pressure and improves memory and skin tone. It is also a powerful aphrodisiac. Trust me, that isn’t a myth. Here are a few places
Tucked behind the gorgeous Bellagio conservatory is the chocolate and pastry shop Jean-Philippe Patisserie, which features the largest chocolate fountain in the world. Dark, milk and white chocolate cascades over cut-glass islands behind a glass wall. Try the European tradition (which ranks right up there with making out in plazas and taking siestas) of indulging in pastries and crepes and thick, creamy hot chocolate (not the watery, ersatz crap you’re used to).
Switzerland is known for snowy mountains, clean streets, dependable watches and, most importantly, chocolate. Made in the Zürich and shipped all over the world Teuscher chocolates have set up shop at the Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood. Crafted from fresh cream and butter with a champagne cream center, these morsels are pretty much the taste of ecstasy wrapped in foil and not packaged for individual resale.
Vosges Aztec-inspired chocolates are exotic and complex, featuring ingredients like chili, cinnamon, Mexican vanilla and Argentine dulce de leche. This shop is unafraid to explore unusual chocolate pairings. The Italian collection truffles are filled with Taleggio cheese and Tuscan fennel pollen (trust us, it works). One collection is inspired by groove music (the box comes with a CD that you listen to while you taste test) and another by hip-hop, suitably containing champagne and topped with edible gold leaf (get it, bling-bling). In honor of Day of the Dead on November 2nd, Vosges is also offering skull-shaped chocolates in an array of flavors. Or you could explore Rastafarian culture with the Zion collection - truffles infused with the flowers, fruits and herbs of Jamaica (uh, pot truffles, anyone?)