WHO In 2015, Daniela Mazzone switched her creative focus from writing to chocolate when she started Chocolat by Daniela from her home kitchen in Adelaide. The self-taught chocolatier cites trial and error as her main guide. "Although I had some mentoring from my wholesaler, who has years of experience, I had very little knowledge of couverture to begin with," she says. "It's a very precise art."
WHAT Mazzone specialises in hand-rolled, ganache-centred truffles. The chocolates are made using premium couverture from Cacao Barry, and are flavoured with various liqueurs, rose petals, spiced nuts and dried fruit. When it comes to choosing her fillings, Mazzone likes to experiment with South Australian-produced ingredients,including gin from boutique distillery Kangaroo Island Spirits, craft beers from Big Shed Brewing Concern, and wines from McLaren Vale winery Primo Estate. "The seasonal fruits and botanicals usually come from surrounding gardens, including my nonna's and neighbours," she says.
HOW Chocolat by Daniela truffles are handcrafted, then packaged in assortments that change regularly. Most of the assortments feature Daniela's two most popular flavours: Gianduia ganache infused with coffee, Marsala and amaretto, and the "very dark, very edgy" Americano, which combines American ale, stout and salted-caramel ganache. Some collections come with a bottle of wine, too, with the truffle flavours created to match the drop.
WHY "The process is so expressive and romantic," says Mazzone. "It's not about a cookie-cutter mould, and the goal is always to make people feel something beyond the everyday experience of chocolate."
WHERE*Chocolat by Daniela truffles are available at * chocolatbydaniela.com.au.