Thursday, January 17, 2008

The Big K: K Chocolatier

K Chocolatier is the brainchild of Diane Kron who, with her husband, sold gourmet Hungarian style chocolates to the stars in the 1970s. There is much lore associated with the Krons. According to their publicity materials, Diane's husband's great grandfather was the chocolate-maker to Emperor Franz Josef of Austro-Hungary (Presumably the chocolates did not play a role in the fall of the Austro-Hungarian empire, over which Josef presided). The Krons also claim to have invented the chocolate covered strawberry. When it opened in 2000, Diane's Beverly Hills store signaled her return to chocolate after a 17 year absence. They recently added as second location in Malibu.

When you walk into the tiny, cramped storefront of K Chocolatier, it seems as though you have escaped from the hustle and bustle of Beverly Hills. You are offered voluminous samples of high end truffles and liqueur filled chocolates in a little shop that could be owned by your grandmother, dotted as it is with tchachkas and stacked boxes of chocolates. Often, Diane herself staffs the store and the service is less Beverly Hills stuffy than down home friendly.

Being a purist, I am a fan of their regular chocolate truffles (pictured above). The small cocoa covered cubes are a rich, creamy version of the traditional French truffle with a hint of rum. Their only fault is in being a tad sweeter than necessary. Kron also makes delightful marzipan filled chocolate. Kron's goodies are definitely in the top tier of LA chocolate truffles.

While the store may not feel like Beverly Hills, the price tags do. A small bag of chocolate truffles, containing what amounts to a large handful, goes for $35.

K Chocolatier/diane kron
9606 South Santa Monica Boulevard
Beverly Hills, CA 90210
(310) 248-2626

3835 Cross Creek Road
Malibu, CA 90265
(310) 317-0400

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