While I have discovered and enjoyed many gluten and dairy-free bakeries, baking mixes, and other sweets in my career as a food intolerant blogger, I have yet enjoy the luxurious experience of going to a gourmet chocolate shop and being able to select custom crafted creations that are safe for me to eat.
Luckily, this review breaks the gourmet chocolate drought for me, because Pure Chocolate by Jinji is the answer to my gluten-free, dairy-free chocolate loving prayers. Based in Baltimore's Belvedere Square Market and with retail locations around the area, Jinji is a chocolate purveyor like none other.
The Chocolate curated at Jinji Chocoalte is gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan, and raw. That's right, it's allergy-friendly, and is specially crafted to preserve the health benefits associated with raw foods. Believe it or not, chocolate is actually a superfood and contains more antioxidants than green tea, red wine, or blueberries. With that in mind, I definitely did not hesitate to indulge in the beautiful chocolaty creations.
If you have any questions about the chocolate or the ingredients used, I recommend talking over any concerns with the chocolatier on duty. The day I visited, the staff member at the booth was really helpful in directing me towards chocolates I might want to try. On display was an array of chocolate artisanal creations as well as chocolate bark and other offerings.
The first chocolate I selected was the vegan marshmallow chocolates. The white hard shell encompassed a soft, gooey, luxurious marshmallow within. I loved the simplicity of the treat, and the sinful deliciousness of each bite. As I often cannot indulge in white chocolate or marshmallows, this chocolate was a revelation and true indulgence for me.
Next, appealing to my adopted Maryland pride, I selected the Baltimore Old Bay creation. Here, a decadent dark chocolate covered a white chocolate interior. The sweet dessert definitely featured a pop of signature Old Bay spice, but the flavoring was not too overwhelming. I loved the salted celery garnish on top, which added a splash of color and contrasting salty taste.
On recommendation from the chocolatier I spoke with, I came home with a Ninety-Seven chocolate ball. As a dark chocolate fan, this one definitely checked all the boxes for me, packing a rich, decadent chocolate flavor into one intense ball. Notes of vanilla definitely were detectable, adding to the complexity of the flavor.
Last but definitely not least was the dipped salted caramel slice. Larger than the others, this chocolate was a bit different, but maintained the high quality and craftsmanship of the others. The salted caramel base was paired with the perfect amount of dark chocolate decadence. I loved every dense, rich forkful.
Needless to say, Jinji Chocolate is now one of my favorite places in Baltimore. I definitely will be back to purchase each of the sweets featured above, and hope to check out their other offerings in future visits. It's so nice to be able to enjoy little luxuries such as white chocolate, ganache, and handcrafted chocoltaes again, and I am so glad I stumbled upon one of Baltimore's best kept gluten-free, vegan secrets.
Jinji Chocolates can be found daily at Belvedere Square Market. Other local locations offering the chocolates include Mom's Organic Market, Artifact Coffee, Fleet Street Market, and Milk and Honey. A listing of all locations can be found at this link. Prices are noted on each chocolate's placard, the salted caramel's price was $3/piece.
Disclaimer: This review is current to the original publication date. Updates will be noted. Ingredients and manufacturing processes can change without notice. Each product should be reviewed for individual nutritional needs. Feel free to to contact me with any questions or comments. I purchased this product independently, and the review is a reflection of my personal opinion.