Have you ever thought about making your own chocolates in a workshop operated by a professional confectioner? If yes, we recommend one of the most authentic places where you can do so: Barny’s Chocolatier, which is just a few minutes walk from Déli Railway Station. Founder and owner Barnabás Máthé makes sweets based on his own ideas, with his own two hands.
The owner brought his childhood dream to life by opening the store last July, although he had to come a long way. He worked at Gelato Italiano, then studied for years in Australia, then became an ice cream maker at the famous Szamos Marcipán. After he became an operations manager and was responsible for the production of the chocolates, he came to a decision: it was time to stand on his own two feet. Those with a sweet tooth are the ones who probably benefit the most from this decision.
Barnabás works with soy lecithin-free chocolate imported from South America, which might be more expensive than “basic” chocolate, but in return has a much higher cocoa content (43.5% for milk chocolate, 71% for dark chocolate). He fills this chocolate with natural flavoursonly, that is, he does not use any aroma, pastel, colorant or glucose syrup, but instead works with cream, vanilla pods, nuts, coffee and peanuts. He does everything on his own, including roasting the peanuts for the praline.
The chocolates are made according to Barnabás’ own recipes, and their flavours are quite unique. The most extraordinary might be the espresso truffle, an excellent mixture of coffee and dark chocolate – we cannot really get anything else like this in Hungary at this time.
The chocolates contain 0 grams of preservatives, and thus have a three-week use-by-date – meaning that you will not find anything that is older than two weeks behind the counters at Barny’s. Barnabás is trying to attract new customers with initially shocking products, like chili chocolate, and with less surprising, but similarly delicious ones, like the hazelnut praline.
We tasted both: the former tasted like regular chocolate at first, but within seconds the spicy flavour popped up right away, and the latter bonbon proved to be our favourite. We did not miss out on the vanilla and cream caramel bonbon either, which hides half an almond, or the rum and nut truffle ball, in which we can taste the alcohol as soon as the hard outer shell snaps open.
You would think that Barnabás puts a high price on such quality and flavour, but we would say that they are still on the cheaper side - especially considering the rather expensive ingredients he uses.
But how can we make our own chocolate? By applying for the course on Barny’s website, naturally! Barnabás shares a fragment of his knowledge during the 3 - 3.5 hour sessions. He warms up his pupils with about 15 minutes of lexical theoretical education, and then the apprentice confectioners can cook chocolate cream, try various bonbon moulds, and at the end of the session, they can return home with around 20 - 30 decagrams of their own chocolate!
Valentine’s Day is quickly approaching, and what else could be more romantic and personal than a gift of homemade sweets?
1126 Budapest, 12 Németvölgyi Road