“Mmmm, this would taste good with a dusting of cocoa powder,” says Chantal Coady, as she bites into an aubergine melanzane and reaches into her handbag. I watch, anxious that she will suggest I do the same. But no, she pulls out her phone instead.
Not that I needed to worry. When the suggestion comes from a woman who was awarded an OBE for “services to chocolate”, it’s a safe bet she can balance flavours. I’d already eaten a Devon-grown chilli chocolate square and tasted some chocolate caviar – all before 11am, the start time of a private truffle-making class at the Rococo Chocolates shop in London’s Belgravia by Chantal herself, who founded the brand in 1983.