As Valentine's Day approaches, many people are planning on spending some quality time with their sweetheart, which may involve a date with dinner, an exchange of gifts and perhaps much more.

With that in mind, foods believed to have aphrodisiac properties are a common choice for a Valentine's Day dinner which may, for example, start with fresh oysters on the half-shell and finish with a chocolat fondant.

Chocolate and oysters, together at last!

Chocolates and oysters. In Europe and the Americas, these two aphrodisiacs may be enjoyed in the same meal, yet almost never blended, let alone eaten together.

However, for master chocolatier Hironobu Tsujiguchi, winner of the highest award at the Salon du Chocolat in Paris, combining unexpected ingredients and creating new taste sensations is just par for the course. His latest creation, "Chocolat Cru: Huîtres" (which means "Raw Chocolate: Oysters" in French) testifies to his creative genius.

Japanese palates are accustomed to seafood with a sweet twist, such as in grilled fish teriyaki style or tazukuri tiny sardines cooked in sugar and soy sauce, so the concept of seafood and chocolate together may not seem so odd here. Nevertheless, blending oysters and chocolate sounds adventurous, to say the least.

Fukuya Department Store's 10 Year Countdown to Its Centennial

"Chocolat Cru: Huîtres" is the first of ten yearly offerings by the master chocolatier in a collaboration with the Fukuya department store in Hiroshima, which will celebrate its centennial in 2029. Every year, Tsujiguchi will produce a dessert featuring famous foods from Hiroshima Prefecture. Since Hiroshima produces some of the best oysters in Japan, they were a natural choice for Tsujiguchi's inaugural offering.

Personal field research and devotion to quality

In his pursuit of excellence, Tsujiguchi personally conducted field research at the Kanawa Suisan Company's oyster farms, tasted osyters, visited the processing plant and learned everything he could about oysters before finally deciding on the best way of incorporating them into his chocolate dessert.

In the end, Tsujiguchi opted for an oyster sauce rich with the concentrated essence of the best Hiroshima oysters as a base, mixing it smoothly into a truffle style chocolate paste. Inside a triangle shape, two layers of this chocolate paste are nested between a lower layer of crunchy praline and and upper layer of ganache imbued with oyster sauce.


If you'd like to try these most unusual chocolates for yourself, you'll need to visit the Fukuya Department Store in Hiroshima City. Here are the details:

  • Name: Chocolat Cru: Huîtres
  • Price: 2,232 JPY
  • Number: 24 pieces
  • Quantity: Limited edition of 500
  • On sale from: January 31st, 2019 10:00 JST
  • Floor: Fukuya Hachobori Main Store, 7th Floor
  • Location: Mont St. Clair booth, inside the "Chocolat Show" area

By - Ben K.