Chocolate’s always been a big part of my life. After a ton of truffle making this year, I decided I wanted to dig in a bit and learn more about how to make artisanal chocolate. In Washington, D.C., Co Co. Sala and its incredible chocolate master chef Santosh Tiptur spring to mind immediately when you think about really great chocolate. The store and incredible chocolate-centric restaurant do everything from savory dishes to beautiful, hand-decorated chocolates. If you haven’t already been, go check it out; their showpieces, strewn around the restaurant and store for decoration, are pretty incredible. Tiptur and the co-owners were kind enough to allow me to trail at Co Co. Sala for a week over the summer. What followed was a revelation.
In what was apparently the slow season, Katie, who heads up the chocolate-making program (there’s a whole other team dedicated to the chocolate dishes for the restaurant) and Marisol, who is a key part of making the chocolates happen, churned out chocolate decorations, truffles, bonbons, bars and all manner of incredible confections. They graciously included me and explained what they were doing as they went. These photos are a few shots from the day Marisol (pictured) and Katie were working on chocolate garnishes for the restaurant dishes, and chocolate curls for cocktail garnishes and hot chocolate.