There are several cities in this world where we feel we have a really strong connection with, and every time we visit them, it's almost as if we are just going back home. New York is one of these cities!
The Big Apple actually has an even stronger connection with us, not least because that's where our idea of Chocwich was born back in 2013, when we launched Fifth Dimension Chocolates! If you have not heard the story before, the concept of the Chocwich just came into my head one Saturday morning when I was walking down 6th Avenue in Manhattan to find a place for breakfast near Bryant Park - the name, look and texture of Chocwich just popped up in my head. It's as simple as that! Every time we go to New York now, we always make a point of going back to the birthplace of the Chocwich. Here's a picture of Russell standing at exactly that location in January this year.
You may have already noticed that all our filled chocolates are named after cities, and naturally we have made an association between apple and New York. The inspiration came from a rather welcoming warm apple pie that we had in New York in the middle of winter - the pie was drizzled with a gooey salted caramel sauce, and then topped with a rich vanilla ice-cream. On that same trip, we had an apple pie flambéed in Calvados in Miami which we couldn't stop talking about!
As soon as we returned to London, we started working on our apple chocolate, as we had a real urge to add "New York" to our collection this year. We wanted to create a chocolate that would reflect the taste of these wonderful apple pies, and so that's how we came up with our new flavour: Apple & Calvados Caramel chocolate!
Originally we had a different shape for this chocolate in mind, as we wanted it to look like a piece of pie (to remind us of the apple pie). However, when we tried the chocolate using the original shape, it just didn't feel right in the mouth - we felt that the corners and the edges of the shape just didn't go well with the texture and the flavour of this chocolate. So we went back to the drawing board and made a few batches using different shapes (we had the difficult task of eating a lot of "New York" in various guises) - finally we settled on the current shape, which we felt was a perfect match with the flavour.
You may ask "but this shape looks like an eyeball, why do you think it's a shape for New York?". For me, this is such a vibrant city and you really have to see the city with your eyes (not through camera lens or your phone) to experience the excitement of this city. Also there are always unexpected things happening, and so if you don't have your eyes open, you may miss out the fun around you.