The pandemic ushered in the necessity to be more flexible and adjust our expectations of many things. Of the numerous things that this season of life has highlighted for me is the need to be grateful for all the seemingly little things that were once taken for granted.
It also reminded me of the saying, “The best things come in small packages.” The cacao bean is a great illustration of this. It is small, yet wonderfully indulgent and amazing creations start with this little bean. This saying also applies to the creations found at Azar Indulgences, a shop that was started by Christine Azar to “share the historic chocolates her family enjoyed with others.”
This small shop is located in The Heathman Hotel in downtown Portland, Oregon. While their treats seem little in appearance, they boast unique flavors that you won’t find in a typical chocolate shop. This shouldn’t come as a surprise when you read the description on their website:
With a family tradition dating back over a century, Azar Indulgences specializes in handcrafted, artisan chocolates from Lebanon.
This locally-owned chocolatier offers Belgian-style chocolates using only the highest quality, ethically-sourced ingredients, with options that are free of dairy sugar, gluten, and nuts, as well as vegan.
If you like the idea of being surrounded by adorable confections and captivating scents that tickle the nose, then this place will feel like paradise! Your tastebuds will also welcome the abundance of different flavored treats to choose from.
All of their creations require going beyond the surface to be appreciated. Take for example their Chewy Walnut Pistachio. This one that threw me for a loop in a good way. While it looks like a pistachio and walnut mixture covered in dark chocolate, the real surprise comes when you bite into it and experience the freshness of rose water. Their Dark Chocolate Lemon is another one of their unique flavors. Based on its name it sounds like something you can easily obtain elsewhere. However, one bite of this rose shaped treat reveals a zesty lemon filling on top of a wafer that is covered with dark chocolate.
Azar Indulgences also caters to those who enjoy traditional flavors as they carry Berry Cheesecake that is covered in either mild or dark chocolate, Dark Chocolate Blackberry Cake, and Peanut Butter Truffle just to name a few. You really need to visit their website as they have quite a wide assortment of confections that will please varying palates.
Now if you are looking for a mouthwatering drinking chocolate you need to try theirs. Christine said that some of her customers have commented that it is reminiscent of Angelina’s in Paris, and I could see (or should I say taste) why. Although it is made with oat milk rather than heavy cream, this shot of chocolate possessed a wonderfully intense cocoa flavor.
Yet another thing that you will find at Azar Indulgences that is not in short supply is Christine’s passion for what she does, as well as her hospitality. The moment you walk in the door you are pleasantly greeted as she ushers you into her wonderful world of artisan chocolate. And what a wonderful world it is!
So, if you want to get whisked away into a Lebanese chocolate adventure full of flavor and good cheer, Azar Indulgences is just what you’re looking for.
Go to: Azar Indulgences