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K+M Extra Virgin Winter Spice Milk Chocolate 

I ended my year with a bar of Thomas Keller Chocolate. It belonged to my brother-in-law Rudy, but I took a small square, because who in their right mind wouldn't try dark chocolate crafted by the famous French Laundry chef? I let it melt on my tongue and coat my entire mouth, slowly savoring the layers of smooth chocolate with hints of spiced citrus. I give it a 10 out of 10, but duh, Thomas Keller? My only problem is that I wanted more after, much like Rudy felt after eating at French Laundry in Yountville. I kid you not, he and my sister spent an entire house payment on a meal consisting soley of organ meat and left so hungry they had to stop for a burger.

Other than the price being triple what peasant chocolate bars cost, it was everything I'd dreamed it would be. With innovative ingredients: organic extra virgin olive oil by Armando Manni and organic cocoa beans processed so delicately that their antioxidants remain intact. Sounds trendy to me! The bars come in a few varieties by country of origin and cocoa content that goes up to 75 percent. The milk chocolate bar is made with RBST-free milk powder, organic cane sugar, and tangerine oil.

The 2.5-ounce bars are $14.95 each at Williams Sonoma, 865 Monterey St., SLO. On Amazon, a four pack is $49.95 plus shipping. For more info, see Δ

Flavor writer Beth Giuffre can only afford to be trendy one chocolate bar at a time. Send RBST-free cocoa-filled treats to [email protected].

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