Boule Orfèvre de Mendiant from La Maison du Chocolat

La Maison du Chocolat Noël 2011 Christmas collection

La Maison du Chocolat is probably France’s best-known chocolate shop, synonymous internationally with luxury gourmet chocolate.

Founded in Paris in 1977 by legendary master chocolatier Robert Linxe, it today boasts stores in Cannes, London, New York, Tokyo and Hong Kong.

Along with Salon du Chocolat and some of France’s greatest chocolatiers, the company recently paid tribute to its founder, with a special exhibit honouring Monsieur Linxe’s pioneering artistry as one of the first modern gourmet chocolatiers.

La Maison du Chocolat’s chocolate and pastry artisans now work under the creative direction of Gilles Marchal, former head pastry chef at Le Bristol, who took over the helm in 2007.

This year’s Christmas goodies include some spectacular luxury chocolate creations.

Boule Orfèvre de Mendiant from La Maison du Chocolat

Entirely handcrafted, the Boule Orfèvre de Mendiant is a 6.1-kg edible ornament filled with chocolate-covered almond, pecan, pistachio and dried fruit confections, individually wrapped in 22-carat gold leaf.

The outer shell features  2,000 tiny perforations made by hand.

Bûche Magie de Paris, from La Maison du Chocolat

The Bûche Magie de Noël combines luxury chocolate and pastry, with a Yule log that includes vanilla bean cream, dark chocolate mousse, and griotte filling encased in a fully edible dark chocolate “box” decorated with 22-carat gold leaf-covered Paris monuments.

The cherry on top is made with pure white chocolate.

Pampille de Mendiant, from La Maison du Chocolat

Last but not least, the handmade Pampille de Mendiants (Mendiants tassel) features almonds, hazelnuts, pistachios, pecans and chocolate nibs, as well as 22-carat gold leaf.

Each Pampille weighs 180 grams.  Maybe this one could hang on the Christmas tree…  at least for a while.

These three special Christmas confections go on sale December 1, 2011 in La Maison du Chocolat shops in Paris, London, Hong Kong, New York and Tokyo, except for the Bûche Magie de Paris, which will be available only on December 22, 23 and 24, 2011 in the company’s Paris stores.

Photos: © La Maison du Chocolat

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