While driving through the one street town of Yountville in Napa Valley, stop at the V-Marketplace and visit Chef Chris Kollar and Naomi Pasztor at Kollar Chocolates.
Chris Kollar has been a savory chef for over 19 years. In 2001, he moved to Napa Valley and worked in some of the finest restaurants that include Domaine Chandon and as an Executive Chef at Peter Michael Winery in Calistoga. He used to cook steaks and chops, now he makes handmade chocolates.
When Chris met Naomi from Switzerland, the two decided to combine their passion of chocolate and open a modern chocolate kitchen and store in the V-Marketplace. Their kitchen is open with glass windows for guests to watch these chocolate makers prepare their beautiful artisan chocolates.
“It’s a three-day process to make each batch of chocolate,” said Kollar as I observed and interviewed him while he was making chocolate. “This vibrating machine takes all the air bubbles out,” shared Kollar.
The chocolates are beautiful and shiny with whimsical designs on many of my favorites that I tasted while in the store. Have you ever tried Fennel Pollen chocolate? It’s an award-winning delicious treat with a light olive green hue. How about Coffee Kahlua chocolate made with dark chocolate ganache? It’s superb. His red wine chocolate has Napa Valley red wine and dark chocolate ganache.
Chef Kollar always makes speciality chocolates for the holidays. Since I was in his store during Spring, there were chocolate Easter bunnies and large chocolate eggs on display.
Buy a box of chocolate and enjoy them alone or with a fine bottle of Napa Valley wine.
Kollar Chocolates – 6525 Washington Street, Yountville, CA. Learn more by clicking on www.kollarchocolates.com.