Come and worship at the altar of Paul A Young’s new chocolate shop!
Oh, my Catholic father would not like that sentence. However, it is not blasphemous, because Paul has actually acquired a former altar to act as the main serving table in his new Wardour Street location, the third of his collection of unique chocolate boutiques. It was reclaimed from an old church and polished up. It fits with many of the other features in the shop that adhere to Paul’s ethos of uniqueness, combined with a desire to be as environmentally friendly as possible (Paul only uses Ecover or similar products to clean). I suppose suggesting you go and worship there is somewhat blasphemous, but if you’ve ever tasted one of Paul’s chocolates you might understand why you would want to worship a man who can create such delicious chocolate truffles. I’ve just come back from tasting all of the Summer collection he launched in line with the shop opening, including a tomato and basil truffle.
Tomato and basil in chocolate? Yes, and it works! Paul vows he would never to do anything for show, it has to taste good too. Even if it takes him 100 attempts to get the right balance of flavour. My favourite, though, was the Wild Strawberry with Balsamic and Black Pepper. Closely followed by the Stout chocolate, oh, and the Black Sesame. I’ve tried sesame chocolates before and not been overawed. This one was excellent.
Like the other two chocolateries – the original in Camden Passage and its teeny tiny brother in the Royal Exchange – the Wardour Street boutique has a kitchen below that can (and will) provide all of the chocolate delights. Every single one of Paul’s chocolates will continue to be handmade, including the tempering that is done by hand (and strong arm) on giant marble-topped tables. The space is not open to the public, but I am sure he could be persuaded to run a chocolate class or two there at some point in the future and then you might be able to sneak a look in too.
Opening hours are not yet confirmed but I’m sure it’ll be until at least 7pm. My fingers are crossed for an 8pm close at the earliest, so I could get my dessert from there after an early supper at one of the excellent Soho restaurants nearby. Or, perhaps I just won’t risk it, and have dessert first. Like tonight, where it was all three courses for me (including a champagne truffle to start!). A very happy supper.
You can find Paul’s shop here: 143 Wardour Street, Soho.