According to Betty's 2007 LAT article that contrasted styles of local chocolatiers, the delicacies of Madame Chocolat's, AKA Hasty Khoe, was the frilly, nostalgia-laced answer to Xuan Ngo's disciplined, starker sweets aesthetic. But the juicier story was revealed a few months later when I checked her website; Ms. Khoe had become Mrs. Torres, another productive outcome of her apprenticeship with the New York-based master. Talk about getting your man!
Food world gossip aside, when I run Beverly Hills errands lately I'll park on Canon Drive to avoid the crowds on busier streets. And it also gives me an excuse to stop at Mme Chocolat. While the gorgeous truffles and artful chocolates tantalize (the store's interior itself is way baroque for my taste, though), it's the dark chocolate malt balls that have me hooked. I forgot how much I love super crunchy -- but not chalky -- Whoppers until I had her version.
And another recent happy discovery: the chocolate chip cookies might be the best in Los Angeles. Or at least a close second to Clementine's. They're the sibling of Torres's huge discs that I've eaten on the steps at the DUMBO shop immediately after paying the bill and grabbing my stuff, with chopped bittersweet chocolate chunks laced through the soft dough so that select portions of chocolate get nice and crisp. If you're feeling a bit generous, they can be big enough to share. This week's gift-to-self is the chocolate-dipped and sprinkle covered Rice Krispie Treats cubes; they're amazing in that junk food gross/good juxtaposition way. But unlike, say, a recent Crumbs Bakeshop gross/good mint chocolate chip cupcake experience that was satisfying while it was happening but doesn't need to be repeated, I'll be having these again. Especially if parking on Canon stays as low key as it's been lately.