I was recently sent a package of goodies from Valerie Confections in LA. This is the good stuff — fresh, decadent and delicately flavored. Here's what I sampled:
The Lemon Hazelnut Nougat — I knew I'd like this one as soon as I saw it — lemon, nuts, dark chocolate — all the things I like in one confection. The flavor was bright with a delicate lemon flavor and a subtle nutty flavor from the hazelnuts. The texture was slightly crunchy, yet smooth from the melt of the chocolate.Not only did they taste great, they also came in a cute box with a pretty little ribbon.
The Almond Fleur de Sel Toffee — Oh boy was this good! Salt, butter, sugar, almonds & bittersweet chocolate in one delightful package. They shatter as you bite into them, releasing and mingling all the wonderful flavors at once. Wow!
Salt & Pepper Truffles — Here's something I haven't tried before and I wasn't sure what to expect. Surprisingly the pepper in these truffles lent a wonderfully subtle, fruity and spicy edge to these silky smooth confections. And the Fleur de Sel chocolate was wonderful — one of my favorite combinations — salt and chocolate.
Liquid Caramel (square) — Intense liquid caramel with that rich, salty, burnt sugar flavor that you want in a caramel.
Bittersweet truffle — A pretty little molded dome filled with a fruity chocolate ganache that is wonderfully smooth and incredibly satisfying.
One of the things I loved about the Valerie confections was their subtlety. The lemon nougat wasn't too lemony and the pepper truffles weren't overwhelmingly peppery. Everything was balanced which allowed all the different flavors to shine through. Not to mention that all the chocolates were beautiful and beautifully presented.
I enjoyed all the confections that I tried from Valerie and will be keeping an eye on their website to see what new flavors they come up with in the future.