Sweet Love

Remember that line from an old Sarah McLachlan song: "Our love is better than chocolate"?

Sweet sentiment, yes. But clearly, Sarah had never tried the lavender-infused ganache or a sea-salt caramels from Black Dinah Chocolatiers on Isle Au Haut.

Before you start rolling your eyes and thinking, "Whatever," give us a chance to state our case. Yes, there's an abundance of overly sweet, not particularly good handmade chocolates in Maine. These don't fit into that category.

Though Isle Au Haut seems an unlikely, far-flung venue for high-end, artisanal chocolate, owners Kate and Steve Shaffer have made a go of it. The island's bold cliffs and natural beauty inspire them, and each truffle, in turn, looks like a miniature piece of art.

However, the beauty is more than skin deep. Kate Shaffer had decades of kitchen experience under her belt when she decided to study chocolate four years ago. Her talent for blending complex flavors — and her appreciation for subtlety — are evident in each jewel-like truffle.

Don't take our word for it, though. Try one for yourself. Or a dozen. The Shaffers will ship them anywhere, and the confections are absolutely worth the wait and the expense.

And if you're one of those romantics who thinks love is better than chocolate, these may just change your tune.

For more information, visit Black Dinah Chocolatiers online.


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