Sunday, January 31, 2010

Ganache: Chocolate Home - Where the Heart Really Is

Ganache Chocolate Lounge
250 Toorak Rd

South Yarra

Telephone: 03 9804 7485

Apologies for the three week hiatus as I returned to the motherland - back in Melbourne now in full force! (As is the heat, I can see!)

As promised in this post, the time for BFF J and I to elevate our love for chocolate to an academic level came yesterday in the form of one of Master Chocolatier Arno Backes' chocolate courses - specifically, 'How to Create a Chocolate House'!

Oh and I can't wait any longer, feast your eyes on this little baby!

What a wonderful class it was, the level of gushiness I feel like I must inject into this post is akin to a fantastic first date - and he's funny, so funny, did I mention?

The class began with a description of the three ways of melting and tempering chocolate - French, German, or Italian. FYI, Arno scorns the use of a metal bowl over simmering water. Apparently, one is meant to treat chocolate like one's own skin - therefore the temperatue of the chocolate, or rather 'couverture', should never exceed 40 degrees Celsius. Fancy that.

This, by the way, is the Italian method - a hefty 200 pound machine Arno describes as his 'Italian girlfriend' who took 'ages convincing to go upstairs'. All classes, and the kitchen, which we shamessly perve on during the course of the class, are held above the main shop.

And here you go - some of the processes involved in making the Chocolate House - I feel the need to preempt these with a bit of a disclaimer - I was honestly very much the dunce of the class, while J was a total star.

For example:

This was meant to be circular.

And these were meant to be identical.

Show-off. (J's fences.)

J methodically putting her house together.

Level One. If only we could all use water glasses to prop our homes up.

J flipping her house - as you may observe, her base is a perfect circle.

And my house - up and at 'em! It's quite easy to see that it's got loads of imperfections! Oh but the joy I felt when it was finally up - unparalleled (as were my walls evidently)!

Setting up fences - don't want the neighbours trespassing, after all. Observe the abundance of 'off-cuts' of chocolate on the table - we got to keep them all! Though I must admit that J and I consumed a substantial portion during the class itself - so much so that she inadvertently ate her door.

J gettin' her snow on! (The smoke is just cotton balls!)

Almost done now! Actually, I thought I was done at this point. Can you play 'What's Wrong With This Picture?'

I forgot the door! Ta-da! The finished house in all its flawed glory.

All boxed and ready to go!

In a word? Exhilarating! Best gift ever, if I do say so myself - and I will absolutely return. Though I will probably schedule my next class in winter - the bottom of my house melted and caved in as we were driving home because it was just that hot. It is now totally lopsided - so upsetting, I assure you, that I had to take to my bed for a full fifteen minutes.

Can't wait to do it all over again.

Ganache Chocolate on Urbanspoon


  1. There's nothing wrong with a leaning building - it's worked for Pisa all these years, right? :D

    Honestly, I think yours looks great! Very impressive :)

  2. Really enjoyed this post - it looks like it was a lot of fun!

  3. I really really really want to do this course. Problem is, I'm not sure what I'd do with a chocolate house - it'd be too pretty to eat, yet too much temptation to eat all at once.

    Jetsetting Joyce

  4. hi there do join to share your blog with others

  5. Oh.... chocolate. I want to do this class~

  6. I used to work right near here, and even though I'm a chocoholic, I NEVER went in!! will power.

    Looks like fun though!

  7. Deprive yourself no longer of your childhood dreams! Eat away at the walls and roof of your house ala Hansel and Gratel. You won't regret taking on this 'challenge' of making perfectly symetrical fences and a perfectly rounded lawn for your home :)

    Satisfaction guaranteed!

    -BFF J
    (as mentioned and pictured in the blog post)

    Disclaimer: under no circumstances was I hired/bought over by Ganache to write this. In fact, we weren't even given a discount :(

  8. LOL! This is awesome! It was fun to read and I like the part about how you guys were eating the chocolate along the way! I would have done the same!

  9. Hannah: You're too, too kind but thank you - I actually cheered up reading that!

    Agnes: Oh yeah it REALLY was - thanks!

    Joyce: I would HIGHLY recommend the course - oh, and I'm sure you'll have no shortage of volunteers wanting to help you to dispose of the result!

    Penny: Chocolate's my codeword to 'do anything' too!

    Shellie: What are you - superwoman?! Chocolate's the best, can't go past it! (Well, I can't anyway =op)

    BFF J: Jenny, jenny, jenny - must you point out that your lawn was perfectly round and mine...was not? Haven't I been tortured enough?!

    Rilsta: It was IMPOSSIBLE to resist. I have no regrets - not one! =o)

  10. I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


  11. What a fantastic chocolate creation! Any chance of sending it to me for Christmas? Lol!