Friday, January 14, 2011

The Santa Fe Chocolate Trail

Santa Fe is known for many things, not the least of which is the Old Santa Fe Trail, a trade route connecting Santa Fe to the east, which saw its first traffic in 1821.  Fast forward to 2011, where visitors from both east and west are hot on the Santa Fe Chocolate Trail.  Many of our guests at The Hacienda Nicholas Bed & Breakfast Inn have made a point of visiting all four of these fine chocolatiers during their stays. 

Just three blocks from the Hacienda Nicholas is The Kakawa Chocolate House, located at 1050 Paseo de Peralta.  This artisanal chocolate house features an incredible array of exotic truffles which are hand dipped and rolled daily using dark chocolate and a variety of local organic herbs, fruit nectars and infusions from ginger to lavender.  These truffles are not inexpensive (ranging in price from $4-$5 each, though a box of six is a deal at $18) but well worth the expenditure.  
 
Kakawa also takes hot chocolate to a new level.  Dedicated to using authentic historic recipes, dating as far back as 1000 BC for their drinking chocolates, they offer Pre-Columbian Mesoamerican Mayan Aztec drinking chocolate; 1600's European drinking chocolate, Colonial American and Colonial Mexican drinking chocolates.  Swiss Miss will never satisfy after this experience in hot cocoa!

Another of my favorites on the Santa Fe Chocolate Trail is Todos Santos, also just a few blocks from Hacienda Nicholas at 125 E. Palace Avenue.  This shop, tucked inside a garden courtyard, exudes Santa Fe quirkiness and charm.   Perhaps their most unusual offering is the selection of hand-carved 'silver-covered' chocolate milagros, which would make a unique gift for any chocolate lover on your list.  For yourselves, try one of their handmade chocolate truffles with flavors ranging from rose to grapefruit to toffee. 

Also on the Santa Fe Chocolate Trail are C.G. Higgins Confections and The Chocolatesmith.

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