Tuesday, August 10, 2010

pretty chocolates

We eat with our eyes, so I'm always very pleased to see purveyors put effort into their packaging.

A lot has been said and written about Paulene's chocolates, but one must meet them in person to fully appreciate them.

We bought a box of 12 colorful pralines. Each one's shape is sort of irregular, which suggests that they were hand-made. They're just a little over US$1 apiece.

Because they were kind of expensive, I restrained myself and ate only one a day. The first one was filled with strawberry creme, I think.

Tip: Don't eat them straight out of the fridge. Let them sweat a bit, so that they melt in your mouth.

The problem with eating only one a day is that by the time you eat the next one, you'd have already forgotten what the previous one tasted like. So you can't compare. And no, I did NOT take notes. Some things are best enjoyed unanalysed.

Another tip: Ideally, you must not share. Otherwise, how can you taste all of them?

My favorite was a white chocolate one that tasted of Grand Marnier. It was like an endorphin-bomb exploding in my mouth. My eyeballs involuntarily rolled back in their sockets. Fireworks went off in my head. Sadly, I don't remember which one it is. Which means that I'll have to get another box and try each one again. Or should I get the box of truffles next time?

Paulene's chocolates, available at Cuillere, that lovely French brasserie at Serendra.

I was excited to eat at Cuillere again, after the wonderful meal that I had with friends last year, which I wrote about here. But for some reason, they were off that day, 21 July 2010, when I took the Parents there for dinner. Half of the items on the menu were unavailable, including the much-anticipated duck confit. When Pop tried to order plain rice instead of the rice pilaf that came with his entree, our server told us that they don't have any plain rice. What, you don't have any uncooked rice? Your pilaf comes from a box?

Also, I was feeling under the weather, so I wanted some lukewarm/ room temp calamansi juice.

Server: Oh, sorry, we don't have that.
Me: You mean you don't have fresh calamansi juice?
Server: We have fresh calamansi juice, but it's already in a bottle in the fridge, so we can't serve it at room temperature. It's already been chilled.
Me: So it's not fresh anymore.
Server: No, no, it's fresh.
Me: How can it be fresh when it's in a bottle in your fridge?

How hard can it be to squeeze a couple of calamansi to make a glass of room temperature juice? Seriously.

Maybe it's true what Thomas Wolfe said-- "You can't go home again." It won't stop me from trying, though. Cuillere, I'll be back. Get ready.

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