A certain editor once likened living in Bay Ridge to being a member of a cult — no resident ever seems to want to talk — or write — about anything else. And while it’s an odd theory coming from someone who lives in, of all places, Williamsburg, if being an brainwashed automaton in South Brooklyn means I get to eat my weight in Deliso chocolates, well, sign me the hell up.
There’s no feasible reason that a former stockbroker (forced to switch gears after being laid off from Charles Schwab a few years back) should currently be making the best candies in Brooklyn, but he does. And if saying that blacklists me at acclaimed confectionaries the borough over, so be it. The fact that first-time entrepreneur Anthony Deliso so far out-truffles the competition with little more experience than an online course and a $10 an hour temp job at Jacques Torres just means he’s a mad genius. And the fact that he’s cashing in his chocolate chips in hard-sell Bay Ridge instead of artisan-happy neighborhoods like Park Slope and Cobble Hill just means he has crazy swagger.
If you ask Deliso to theorize on what makes his confections so superior, his response is not unlike what you’d expect to hear from most chocolatiers worth their weight in cacao beans. He makes his candies daily, by hand, in small batches. He uses top-quality ingredients like Belgian chocolate, and fresh fruit purees and infusions instead of extracts. It takes side-by-side comparison (which I’ve subjected myself to on more than one occasion) to determine the differences. Deliso’s chocolate is noticeably richer and smoother. His caramels, more buttery and complex. His miniature espresso cups are like a shot of Arabica delivered directly to the bloodstream. His nut brittles are nuttier. His blood orange truffles are, well, blood orange-ier. These are scientific findings, people.
Deliso Confections has just celebrated its first six months in the neighborhood, and it remains to be seen whether residents will plunk down $2 a candy with enough regularity to keep Deliso’s (and certain sweets-loving writers) dreams alive. Let’s hope they do. This cult is running really low on kick-ass chocolatiers.
278 87th St, (718) 567-7600