Posts Tagged ‘madame chocolat’

Weekly Reading: Tech, Tech, Tech, Chocolate!

I’m back from Florida and have plenty to share. I’ll be putting up the pictures and posting about the trip soon, but for now I have lots of new stories out on these fair interwebs. Not presented in the order the headline would lead you to believe, let’s start with dessert…

First, there’s my SpoiledinLA Holiday Gift Guide Review of Madame Chocolat, which you already got a little preview of.

Then there are two AllBusiness articles: one on web browsing tricks to help you speed up your surfing, and another on whether a netbook is right for you.

And then there’s a piece I did for Entrepreneur.com about the unwritten rules of social networking. I interviewed Joel Postman of Socialized PR about The Unwritten Rules of Social Networking, from how to interact with clients to the best strategies for growing a strong following. We also discussed whether to hire a community manager and how to balance your personal and professional identities. Thanks, Tomdog, for sharing one of your social networking blunders, and thanks to everyone else who shared their social media horror stories via Twitter and LinkedIn, too.

Madame Chocolat: The Most Delicious Interview

Most of the interviews I do for the articles I’m writing are over the phone, so it’s a real treat to get to meet the person I’m writing about face to face. Over the last few weeks, I did not one, but two interviews — for two publications, SpoiledinLA and Hitched magazine — with Hasty Torres at her Beverly Hills chocolate boutique Madame Chocolat. I also took plenty of pictures.

Now, hanging out in a chocolate shop — and getting to indulge in some of the sweets — is never something I’d turn down. I even have a tag devoted to chocolate on the blog. And Hasty’s shop didn’t disappoint. We chatted over lattes mixed with chocolate spoons, and I checked out the incredible holiday chocolates and got a tour of all the goodies in the store, from truffles and bonbons to chocolate covered cheerios. I must say, my favorite chocolate so far was the white chocolate citron, a pretty and creamy bonbon made with lime juice and decorated with delicate teal branches and leaves (second chocolates back on the right in the picture below). The caramel hearts were also delicious, as were the rich and enormous chocolate chip cookies. (OK, I promise to stop drooling now.)

I also learned that you can have a chocolate party at Madame Chocolat, for kids or adults, where you can make chocolates of your own. Ahem — anyone planning a party?

The SpoiledinLA reviews aren’t online yet, but the Hitched Candid 7 article where I talk to Hasty about her relationship with her husband, celebrity chef Jacques Torres is up now. The interview was fantastic, but of course I couldn’t use it all. Here’s my favorite outtake, about how Hasty and Jacques make their relationship work when they both have their own chocolate shops on opposite sides of the country — and how they hope to work together one day:

It works because of our love of chocolate and the love of what we do. It’s so helpful to have a partner who understands what you do and works in your industry. Jacques is still my mentor, and he’s still my chef. There are so many people who say they could never work with their spouse, but since that’s how we met, we really do well together. We’re like yin and yang in the kitchen—we can anticipate each other’s needs, and we know how to help each other out.

Check out the Hitched article to learn how Jacques proposed in the chocolate shop, what their favorite chocolates are, and how being on “The Girls Next Door” has brought in a flood of new requests for “body parts” chocolates.