What do two girls do when they hit pay day? They spend their money (hopefully wisely) on some finer things in life. For my friend Marie and I, we decided to get chocolates in the suburban town of Glendale, California.
Now, to be fair, I must let you know that I have never ordered my own chocolate and filled up a box. The type of chocolates I typically eat are prepackaged (Hawaiian Chocolate covered Macadamia Nuts) or candy bars (Kit Kat). If you haven’t read my story on how I was introduced to chocolate, click here. Marie filled me in on the fact this store is a true gem where sinfully decadent goodies may be found.
According to the Mignon website, the Mignon chocolate family business has been around since 1910 in Kharkov, Ukraine where the founder started the business and turned it a booming business. After much time, the family suffered through the communist regime of the Soviet Union and lost everything, as well as imprisonment for 4 years. From what I understand, the family started all over again in Tehran, Iran and once again became a household name among Armenian, Russian, Jewish and Greek Communities.
Many years later in the 1960’s, family members introduced chocolate to the business and the rest is history. The Glendale location (the one that I visited) opened in 2003 after receiving a huge (and growing) demand from the Armenian community and relatives. It is now run by third generation family members and relatives.
As we walked in the door, I noticed the large display and assortment of chocolates. The sweet smell in the air lingered in my nostrils and Marie & I both gravitated towards the dark cacao goodies. My partner in crime (a moment of chocolate on the lips, is a lifetime on the hips) was clearly on a mission and had already pre-determined her selection. I paced back and forth along the display case, dodging customers while trying to narrow down my choices. It was hard. So many to chose from.
Marie hinted at the manager that I was “a newbie” and had never tried any of their chocolates. He smiled and asked me if I wanted a sample. “Of course, I’d love too!” I replied, flashing him a smile. I went straight for the Dark Chocolate with Caramel. My intention was to take half a bite and give the rest to Marie, but apparently the higher power wanted me to have all of it. As I tried to take a small bite, the caramel oozed down my chin, onto my fingers and in my hair. I guess it just wasn’t meant to be shared.
The store finally cleared out and I was given more room to pace in front of the chocolates. I felt as if a spotlight had descended upon my head. The pressure to chose intensified. After 60 seconds, I finally knew what I was going to get and pointed at…
… the Hazelnut Truffle, Cappuccino Truffle, Cocoa Truffle, Coconut Cream- Milk Chocolate, Cappuccino, Madagascar Vanila, Caramel with Espresso Sea Salt, White Chocolate, Chili Pepper, Lavender, Caramel Milk Chocolate and the Lady Mint.
The nice man behind the counter dropped each morsel into a white box and wrapped it up. Everything is ordered by weight and not priced per piece. This was a revelation, considering I don’t know how chocolatiers work.
The sweet goodies made it all the way back to the house and lasted about a week in the fridge. I’m not the type of person to eat all them in one sitting, but it was nice to share them with my man, who absolutely loved every single bite. His favorite was the Chili Chocolate, while mine was the Caramel Espresso Sea Salt. I’d say the Lavender delivers a true lavender punch, but you wouldn’t want to order 12 pieces of it. It can be a bit much!
Otherwise, my Lady Mint was smooth and creamy with a lingering peppermint flavor on my tongue. The Cappuccino & Hazelnut truffles both melted in my mouth and also on my fingertips. Everything else is good.
Final conclusion: Artisanal chocolate is worth every extra penny. If you happen to live near Glendale, CA or Pasadena, CA, swing by Mignon and get your own!
Mignon Chocolate Boutique
6 E Holly St
Pasadena, CA 91103