Thursday, April 13, 2006

Jacques vs. Reese's, Jacques vs. Me

I’ve always been in awe of the chocolatier Jacques Torres, if only because he seemed more human than the chocolatiers sitting on their Valhrona thrones in France, Belgium, and Switzerland. When I lived in Brooklyn he had a small shop in DUMBO, and when I left for France he decided to set up a factory in Manhattan…right down the street from my old apartment, and where The Baron, my old roommate and high school biology partner, continues to live.

I had forgotten about old Jacques until last week, when The Baron descended on London and gifted me with Jacques Torres peanut-butter-filled chocolate Easter eggs. While The Baron would never be so tacky as to reveal the price of her gift, I’m sure they were a) more pricey than the Kin’pos I forced upon her, and 2) of higher price and quality than a pack of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.

In fact, I was pleased to discover that Jacques’ eggs have very little in common with the Reese’s, which are salty, and best eaten slightly chilled. Jacques’ peanut butter, on the other hand, is creamy and slightly sweet, and should be consumed at room temperature.

I wanted to show you these cute eggs—which inexplicably resemble dinosaur or bird eggs—but as usual, I ate everything up before I could take a picture. But as I was scouring the web for an appropriate image for today’s entry, I fell upon Jacques' bio, which so resembles my own that it provides great comfort during my current period of existential job woe. Let's compare some key dates:

1986
Jacques is awarded with the prestigious M.O.F. medal, the youngest chef to earn the distinction.
vs.
I sell more than 500 boxes of Girl Scout cookies, earning me Top Orange County Cookie Seller and a free trip to Girl Scout Camp.


1988
The Ritz Carlton Hotel Company petitions Jacques to the United States as Corporate Pastry Chef.
vs.
I win the Orange Country Register’s Halloween Fiction Writing Contest, about some nightmarish/scary thing happening and it all turning out to be someone’s bad dream (come on, I was 12). I stand on top of hay bales and have my photo taken with the mayor.

2000-2001
Jacques starts up his own chocolate factory in Brooklyn.
vs.
I am kicked out of the Cailler chocolate factory near my home in the Gruyère Valley in Switzerland.


...well, at least I don’t cause peanut allergies.

Categories: , ,

3 comments:

curious george said...

What was the top selling cookie in Orange County in 1986?

Moko said...

Unfortunately, the answer is the same no matter what year you pick: Thin Mints.

Personally, I never liked them unless they were frozen, then dipped in milk. In contrast, Samoas, sweet Samoas--which always took second place to Thin Mints in the year-end tally--were good anytime, anywhere...

The Scribbler said...

Have you shared your illustrious resume with London's Girls Guides? Surely Lord Baden Powell's heirs would have a place for you.