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Recchiuti Confections Black Box
With perfectly executed flavors and an eye-popping array of shapes and textures, this Recchiuti assortment was our tasters’ top choice, beating out an array of new and old-world boutique chocolates.
Unlike many of the boxed chocolates we’ve tried, the Recchiuti Black Box (16 pieces) offers a full sensory experience, which is part of the reason to give boxed chocolates in the first place. The flavor combinations are what really set this selection apart from the competition. Classic concoctions, such as Burnt Caramel and Piedmont Hazelnut, offer just the right balance of sweet and bitter, while more adventurous flavors, such as Tarragon Grapefruit and Star Anise & Pink Peppercorn, are never overpowering (a problem we’ve encountered with most other flavored chocolates). We also found the chocolate itself to be high quality, with the subtle, long flavor that comes from great cacao. To top it all off, the black-on-black packaging—sexy, but not over the top or too obvious—looks and feels much more elegant than offerings from every other brand we looked at.
Michel Cluizel Chocolate Truffles Milk & Dark, 15
Purer tasting than most of the other brands we tried, these would make a good gift for more traditional chocolate lovers. We don’t find them quite as showstopping in flavor or presentation as our main pick, though.
The Michel Cluizel Chocolate Truffles Milk & Dark assortment (15 pieces) makes a safer choice than the Recchiuti box if you’re giving to someone with a less adventurous palate. There are no wildly unique flavor combos, and the chocolates come in more traditional shapes with classic fillings and nutty flavors. The chocolate itself is very smooth and subtle, if a little on the sweet side. These French confections are also simple and beautiful, reflecting the chocolate maker’s painstaking attention to detail. But we don’t find the flavors in this assortment quite as nuanced as those in our main pick, and the packaging and presentation, although pretty, don’t offer the same visual impact.
La Maison du Chocolat Coffret Maison Dark 29 Pieces
Pure flavors, silky-smooth ganache, and precisely tempered chocolate make these bonbons some of the best we’ve tasted. The conservative packaging isn’t as exciting for a romantic gift, though, and unfortunately only larger boxes are available online.
For the chocolate purist, or anyone looking for the perfect corporate gift, we think the La Maison du Chocolat Coffret Maison Dark set (29 pieces) is a great premium choice. The flavors are subtle enough to let the chocolate shine. The packaging, reminiscent of brown pebbled leather, is understated and innocuous enough to give for professional reasons. Although these chocolates are impressively smooth and slightly less sweet than the Michel Cluizel pieces, the overall flavor profile doesn’t provide the same sensory adventure as our main pick. We also think the assortments available online are a little big, so they’re better for gifting to groups or families rather than just one person (although you can purchase smaller boxes in the company’s stores).
Source: The NY Times
Keyword: The Best Boxed Chocolates