I am in love with the song Sweet Disposition. Especially these past few days, just hearing it brings me back to Malibu, driving with my windows down on Pacific Coast Highway… Aaaaahhhhh love.

I’m not gonna lie, I am a sucker for gifts and surprises. More than the big gestures and productions, I appreciate more the little things done with extra love and attention.  Especially with the Valentines season still looming, I still get all giggly when I hear of thoughtful stories of proposals, surprises, and dates.

I was actually in Baguio for Valentines weekend, but not on a date. No, I decided since I am dateless that everyone in our company be my valentine’s date. So I booked our three-day leadership seminar on that weekend. Valentines weekend. Trust me, the looks I received were not very expressive, but I’m positive I heard someone inject ‘cold heartless bitch‘ whilst supposedly coughing.

Since my mother had just arrived after a major spree in the States, I immediately scoured her luggage for goodies that were for me. Well.. this one didn’t really have my name on it, but I knew who they were from, and anything my Aunt C from Chicago would give, I will take with open arms and a hoarding spirit.
This was the Stash: Chocolate!!!
Vosges Haut Chocolat bars, a box of Truffle Truffles, Sarah’s Dark Chocolate Delights & Terry’s Toffee

My Aunt C from Chicago is literally the Godmother everyone should have. The ultimate Capampangan Martha Stewart, she resides in the suburbs near Chicago and reminds me of a Stepford wife, but better. Everytime I see her, she always has something for me, be it gifts, love, gossip and just plain affection. I feel 100% better after spending a day with her and receiving the inspiration to my pseudo-Martha on crack modes. She is also responsible for such mundane ideas like bringing in a crate of Maine lobsters to Manila so we can enjoy some in the comforts of our own home.

Her daughter also owns Olivia’s Market, one of the chicest grocery delis in Bucktown, Chicago, so that’s probably where she loads up on these epicurean delights.

Anyway, I could spot her signature shopping skills a mile away, so I stole that red paper bag of goodies and hid it in my wine chiller aka. goodie stash. It’s easier to have people think I am an alcoholic for having a chiller in my room, than have my brothers steal my goodies. I have been good and only have nibbles of this here and there. This is probably what is saving my sanity whilst abstaining from my meat loves.
Organic Peanut Butter Bonbon and Goji Chocolate bars from Vosges Haut Chocolat

Organic peanut butter with smatterings of pink Himalayan and Maldon sea salt in deep milk chocolate. I loved the savory appeal when the salt hits my tongue and melts while tasting the peanut butter. It was so delicate and intensified the flavor of the chocolate. The Goji Bar had Tibetan Goji Berries, more sea salt and deep milk chocolate. Goji kinda tastes like chocolate, but not, so this was a bit milder.

I loved the packaging, and the creator’s story. Katrina (chocolatier) went to Vanderbilt U and Le Cordon Bleu, then decided to travel around the world and even worked with the Adria brothers of El Bulli in Spain. She then coined her concept: Travel the World through Chocolate in a mission to create a sustainable luxury chocolate experience. Luxurious it truly is, the price tag is exorbitant! But it’s one of those delicacies that are worth splurging on because they introduce a well rounded sensory experience.
Sarah’s Dark Chocolate Delight
Pistachios, almonds and rice crisps covered in deep chocolate. Not happy this package is too small.
I loved the logo of Truffle Truffle
And the cute characters on the packaging

How dainty are these truffles? They melt quickly, so enjoy just one and close the box for later.

And finally, the classic Aunt C Chicago gift:
Frango Mint Chocolates
I remember when I was 7, I was “nurse” to Aunt C’s husband while on vacation in Manila. They now treat me like their own child. And aside from Ritter Sport, another chocolate bar they gave us, Frango chocolates are the ultimate Chicago memory
Also because Frango is exclusively found in Marshall Field’s, the upscale department store on the Magnificent Mile of Chicago. Such history and exclusivity to these chocolates!
When you open the lid, you get a sense of tradition as the logo remains on the protective sheet.
Frango chocolates are more like mints dipped in chocolate. It is the perfect apertif or palate cleanser after a heavy meal. It is also amazing with coffee
They are so dainty and small, you feel like nibbling on it for a few minutes to fully absorb the freshness of the mint flavor. But then if you’re my brothers, they just go ahead and eat the entire box. To each his own.I love that chocolate has so many variations and traditions. From Vosges crazy exotic concoctions, to Frango’s old school charm, each one is sure to taste good to a sweet tooth with a sweet disposition. And that would be ToT!

Get overwhelmed with Vosges Haut Chocolat
Get your hands on some Frango
It’s Truffle Truffle time!
Taste Sarah’s Pastries & Candies
Experience Olivia’s Market