Dallas, Texas – Dude, Sweet Chocolate (“Best Chocolate/Toffee”)

Restaurant: Dude, Sweet Chocolate
Cuisine: Desserts/Chocolate/Ice Cream/American
Last visited: May 25, 2012
Location: Dallas, Texas  (Bishop Arts District)
Address: 408 W 8th St
Transit: Davis @ Haines – W – NS
Price Range: $10 or less, $10-20

1Poor 2OK 3Good 4Very good 5Excellent 6FMF Must Try!

Food: 5
Service: 4
Ambiance: 2.5
Overall: 5
Additional comments:

  • Pastry Chef Katherine Clapner
  • Award winning
  • Names “best chocolate shop”
  • Hand made chocolates/toffees
  • Fresh premium ingredients
  • All natural
  • Innovative/upscale
  • Dessert only
  • Sampling available
  • Gift shop
  • Online ordering
  • No seats
  • Sun 12-5pm
  • Tue-Thu 10am-9pm
  • Fri-Sat 10am-10pm
  • Closed Monday

**Recommendations: Fungus Amongus – porcini mushroom, pumpkin seed toffee, Albatross – dehydrated blue cheese, sea salt fudge, Bon Bon Asceno – maple and waffle cone marshmallow, and C3P0 – coconut, cashew, and cocoa nib marshmallows. I really like dark chocolate and if you do too try their Holiday in Cambodia – 100% dark, palm sugar, sesame, balsamic.

It was good bye to Follow Me Foodie in New Orleans and hello to Follow Me Foodie in Dallas! Well sort of. I had a 2.5 hour layover in Dallas on my way back home to Vancouver, BC, and 2.5 hours is totally enough time to squeeze in one more food stop. It’s not that I was hungry, considering New Orleans really stuffed me, but I have a cousin in Dallas so she conveniently picked me up at the airport for one more Follow Me Foodie adventure. The destination: Dude, Sweet Chocolate.

It was her pick! And a fine pick it was! She knows my tastes, style and preferences and considering it was the awkward hours of too early for dinner and too late for lunch, we called it a late afternoon snack. She was actually on her way to a crawfish boil and you bet I was so tempted to postpone my flight to join her.

Dude, Sweet Chocolate was heavenly. I didn’t know anything about it, but my cousin said the chocolatier was known as the “Willy Wonka of chocolatiers”, which caught my interests right away. There was a whole “hipster vibe” to it as well and it’s located in an up and coming area in Dallas. We have a few excellent chocolate shops and chocolateiers in Vancouver and I’ve been to some abroad, but this one was unique and memorable with distinct style.

The products and flavours were creative, funky, wild and original which is right up my alley. She has a decent amount of savoury sweet concoctions and although it looks like a small chocolate factory, nothing tastes mass produced and they are indeed handmade creations. I have a strong appreciation for classics and traditional, but I admire and value fearless flavours, innovation and everything made with good quality ingredients. Dude, Sweet Chocolate was all of the above.

I actually got so carried away here that I almost missed my flight back to Vancouver. My plane was boarding at 5:45pm and departing at 6:35pm and I arrived back at the airport at 6:10pm. I was literally the very last person to board the plane and I was that person that kept everyone waiting. I hate being that person, but the sugar rush to and from Dude, Sweet Chocolate was so worth it!

On the table:

Photo from Dude, Sweet Chocolate

**Fungus Amongus – 6/6 (FMF Must Try!)

  • Porcini mushroom, pumpkin seed toffee $12
  • Made case specific to go with cheese especially washed rind, triple or double creams.  A very buttery and creamy toffee made with local cream, local butter, porcini mushroom powder and toasted pumpkin seeds. All of which were added to alleviate the getting stuck in your teeth and the over sweetness of normal toffees.
  • Contains: dairy, soy
  • Suggested pairings: triple cream or washed rind cheeses or ice cream as well as with heavy red wines and cognacs.
  • I think I liked her toffees even more than her chocolates and usually I prefer chocolate over toffee, and for the reason being as she said – the stick to your teeth factor!
  • I like toffee, but I don’t normally order them but I would and did here!
  • They come in golf ball sized chunks so it’s very rustic in presentation. One is just enough because they’re indulgent!
  • The were very rich, creamy and buttery toffee chunks and the mushroom flavour was so dominant which I loved.
  • I hate when the description is more powerful than the end product, but in this case they were equal.
  • There weren’t pieces of chewy dried mushrooms, but the mushroom flavour was powdered and infused throughout so I could taste it in each bite.
  • They were a bit chocolaty with buttery notes of caramel, the earthiness of mushrooms and then the nutty crunch of pumpkin seeds.
  • They weren’t granular with sugar and they almost come across as soft fudge and they just melted in your mouth with little chew.
  • They were sweet, but not hurt your teeth sweet and they weren’t greasy either.
  • It was the perfect balance of sweet and savoury and I wish I had tried them paired with cheese!
  • They would be great paired with Gonzalez Bypass, Palo Cortado, ‘Viejo Apostoles’, aged 30 years from Spain that I tried at YEW – see my post on the wine here.
  • To see another mushroom dessert I’ve tried see – Pecan Puff Pastry with shaved & brulee Asian pear, candy cap mushroom ice cream and mint from Absinthe.

**Spearmint, Cocoa Nibs, Beet and White Chocolate Ice Cream Push Pop4/6 (Very good)

  • $4
  • These were really small and the push pop thing is cute, but the amount of ice cream you get is almost child size.
  • I loved the sound of it and it was a very chunky house made artisan ice cream.
  • The ingredients were no doubt high and it had a nice custard base and unique flavours.
  • The beet was quite mild but there were big chunks of what seemed like hard and chewy dehydrated hibiscus flowers or beets (?) and I couldn’t bite through them.
  • I could taste the white chocolate more and it was mildly minty and not too sweet.
  • The ice cream was creamy and it was pretty good ice cream with good crunchy texture and ingredients.
  • I just wanted more beets and the large pieces of dried hibiscus/beets (?) were a bit distracting for such a small amount.

Lousiana Citrus, Fenugreek, Spearmint, White Chocolate Ice Cream Push Pop3.5/6 (Good-Very good)

  • $4
  • The flavour was a bit more muted in this compared to the red beet one.
  • Again, I loved the ingredients and combination of flavours, but it just didn’t pop.
  • It wasn’t that tart or citrusy and I could taste the white chocolate base most and it was a nice custard based ice cream.
  • I think the citrus was orange and maybe grapefruit, but it didn’t seem that lemony or bright in flavour.
  • It was a bit minty, but not as aggressive as chocolate mint and the fenugreek seeds added nice crunchy texture.
  • Fenugreek has a nutty maple like and slightly bitter flavour and it added nice aromatics to the ice cream.
  • Overall I still found the flavours a bit understated for what it was so I wouldn’t mind stronger or maybe even some lemongrass and basil in it.
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