Valentine's Day chocolate taste test
Athans European BakeryThe crowded Brookline location of this bakery, owned by Aristides Athanasopoulos, is so short on counter help that we follow the lead of another customer and reach for a gold box. First, we brush off the dust, then fill the box with individual foil-wrapped dark chocolates ($20 a pound). There are cards at the shop to tell you whats inside, but no guide once you leave the shop. These large pieces could only be cut with a chefs knife. Many had chalky exteriors (thats the bloom).
1621 Beacon St., Brookline, 617-734-7028, and 407 Washington St., Brighton, 617-783-0313, www.athansbakery.com