Thursday, January 21, 2010

Sweet Bliss

While working for many years as Ralph Lauren’s private chef, my friend Ilene Shane discovered her flare for making confections. In fact, Ralph and his family loved her Almond Buttercrunch so much that they asked her to make it as holiday gifts and encouraged her to market it. And market it she did. Ilene and her friend Iris Libby launched SweetBliss in 2002, selling their first product line at Bergdorf Goodman in New York City. Not a bad beginning. Since then, Ilene has continued to conjure up new combinations of tastes and textures, making SweetBliss a forerunner in the new generation of artisanal chocolatiers. One of her newest collections is the Pop Art line, which combines the “childish appeal of a popsicle with sophisticated abstract art designs.” Each pop is handmade and enrobed in dark Belgian chocolate. They are sold in Lucite boxes, five pops to a box. Flavors include Caramelized Pecan Gianduja (my favorite), Hazelnut Nougat, Chocolate Orange Almond Nougat, Neopolitan (vanilla, chocolate and strawberry), and Rocky Road Fudge. They are adorable and delicious, and the box of pops makes a wonderful gift. To order, visit

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