Ruby (Chocolate) Slippers

Now that I am back at school, I had the opportunity to sample some of the famous Ruby Chocolate a few days ago! And boy was this a flavor surprise!

The chocolate gets its signature ruby color not from dyes or freeze dried fruits, but rather a redder cocoa bean than others chocolates come from. As much as I’d love to tell you more, it’s a closely held trade secret from Barry Callebaut. When first seeing this product, I expected something similar to a raspberry flavored, sugary white chocolate, but thankfully, that was not the case. At first, the palate picks up some fruity notes, but the most surprising thing was the sourness of the chocolate. It was not an unpleasant or strong flavor, it is something that needs to be gotten used to.

Charlie Palmer’s Dry Creek Kitchen- Healdsburg, CA

First and foremost the food was phenomenal. I enjoyed a hearty portion of the charred lamb T-bones. Yes, there were two. The meat was cooked to a beautiful medium rare and were tender and juicy. The bed of Napa cabbage underneath was nothing special other than a spiced pile with random chucks of the lemon goat cheese thrown about the plate. The sweet chili peppers were charred to perfection without losing their bite. I ordered the warm peach and beet salad as my appetizer and for the most part it was very good. The carrot top pesto was inspiring and pair very well with the beets. However, the peaches lacked flavor and some were bruised.

The reason for 3 stars is due to the lacking service at such a prestigious restaurant. We made our reservation through Hotel Healdsburg and requested a table outside. Upon arrival we were not informed that an outdoor table was not available, but rather we were sat at a table in the far corner of the restaurant near the entrance to the kitchen and the servers station. The manager had sent over a sparkling wine, orange, and pomegranate aperitif prior to our meal that was on the sweeter side, but not over the top sweet. After finishing our entrees, however, we realized we had not seen our waitress for quite awhile and were sitting with dirty plates in front of us for over 15 minutes. In a fine dining establishment, that is beyond rude. Not only that, she spent most of her time at a couple’s table who had arrived 20 minutes behind our table and had paid their bill by the time our dishes cleared. The peaches were bruised.