Chocolate is awesome. Let’s just get that out of the way first.
But, what makes chocolate even better?!
How about 15,000+ combinations to create your own custom chocolate bar!!
Eclipse Chocolate – Build a Bar
Eclipse Chocolate Bar & Bistro is a trendy little spot in South Park that produces a steady stream of chocolate treats, drinks, and even some savory bites too.
We were recently invited to check out their newest event, called Build a Bar which allows you to create & customize your very own chocolate bar from a long list of fun ingredients.
This is the brain-child of Eclipse Chocolate founder, Will Gustwiller, who recently was a contestant on Guy Fieri’s Grocery Games (and WON!)
You can purchase tickets from their main website for just $25 here.
There are select dates for when they hold these events and the room can fit up to 30 people or so.
In addition to being able to create two chocolate bars of your choice, you’re also given a drink ticket to pair a beverage of choice. Choose a nice glass of red or white wine, or perhaps a cafe drink. It’s up to you.
The workshop room is in the back of the bistro. You can see that they’ve set the area to showcase the different ingredients. Just above is a screen which runs an informative slideshow about the specific ingredients.
Here you can see their machine that tempers the chocolate.
A close up of all the great options you can combine!
To start off the workshop, some decisions had to be made!
You can choose from dark or milk chocolate as your base. We chose both to mix things up a bit.
After selecting your ingredients from the menu, you simply write it onto the wrapper. (This part is actually a bit challenging if you’re indecisive… there are so many choices!!)
Getting Hands On
The Eclipse Chocolate team will collect them when you’re ready and then bring you a tray with your 3 ingredients and melted chocolate ready for mixing and pouring.
Here is my good friend, Bermellyn, pouring her first chocolate bar into the mold. Look at that concentration!!
After 15 minutes in the chiller, her first milk chocolate bar was ready.
Will came by to help us wrap the bar (which was a lot harder than it looked). But, we figured it out eventually. 🙂
Dark Chocolate Up Next
Onto the dark chocolate bar. Bermellyn was starting to get the hang of this!
Here is my mix-in for my dark chocolate bar. I chose some rather random ingredients to combine.
(Raspberry Hibiscus Sugar, Smoked Almond, & Serrano Chile Sea Salt)
I did enjoy the pouring a lot! And, what was even better was there was extra to eat with the spoon.
It’s interesting to note that the Serrano sea salt was pretty spicy in the melted chocolate. But, once it was chilled in the bar, the effect was significantly less (which was a good thing because it was too overpowering earlier).
That’s a Wrap!
My finished dark chocolate bar!
And, here is Bermellyn’s masterpiece! Dark chocolate with Sea Salt Merlot, Smoked Almonds, & Cherry.
Yep, this one was the winner of the night. The Eclipse Team even took a special note of her dark chocolate bar creation because of its seamless balance of ingredients and layering of flavors.
This was a lot of fun. And, we got to take home the end products to our families. Jorgina and the kids surprisingly liked my dark chocolate one, even with the added heat from the Serrano Sea Salt.
Oh yeah, if you’re hungry, you can also purchase food during the experience. We chose to just focus on the chocolate this time.
Here they are! Our final products.
SALTY NUTS OF PARADISE – Milk Chocolate Bar – Sea Salted Pretzel, Toasted Hazelnut, & Crushed Grains of Paradise
LOVE BY THE FIRE – Dark Chocolate Bar – Sea Salt Merlot, Smoked Almonds, & Cherry
Bermellyn did a great job with the milk chocolate bar, but really hit it out of the park with her dark chocolate creation! Kudos.
HICKORY COFFEE SLAP – Milk Chocolate Bar – Crushed Coffee Bean, Toasted Coconut, & Hickory Sea Salt
SPICY FLOWER POWER – Dark Chocolate Bar – Raspberry Hibiscus Sugar, Smoked Almonds, & Serrano Sea Salt
I think I did okay with my ingredient selection. I’m glad I took some risks, but some of them just didn’t pan out perfectly. The coffee was too overpowering in my milk chocolate creation, muting the coconut and hibiscus tones. My dark chocolate one was decent, but the Serro Sea Salt was a bit too overpowering vs. the hickory and smoke flavors.
Anyhow, the next time you want to do something unique with a friend, family, or loved one, check out this super fun Build A Bar workshop!
*Disclaimer: We were provided complimentary tickets to participate in this event, however, our opinions remain our own.
Build A Bar Workshop
2145 Fern Street
San Diego, CA 92104
If you’re unable to attend in person, you can also create your own custom chocolate bar straight from the website and have it shipped just about anywhere.
Extra credit: Want to guess where we grabbed a couple of tacos just afterward?