Vosges is a high end chocolatier who is known for not just high quality chocolate, but the unusual flavor combinations that it it pairs with its chocolate. One of their specialties is a bacon chocolate bar, for instance, and their other exotic bars include ingredients like wasabi, gogi berries, chipotle chiles and more (although they also have plenty of bars that contain more familiar chocolate ingredients, as well). Vosges also has a line of gourmet baking mixes that I’ve seen here and there, but I was recently in a Vosges boutique and was able to pick up a box of their Love Goddess Chocolate Cake Mix to try.
Ever since I tried the excellent Ad Hoc cake mix a few months ago, I’ve been interested in trying more premium cake mixes to see what – if anything – they offer over homemade cakes. The Vosges mix runs $12 per box and includes all natural ingredients. In fact, the ingredient list is simply: organic sugar, all purpose flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt. All of these ingredients come bagged separately, so working with the mix is a lot like having had someone do all your mise-en-place for you so you don’t need to measure anything. Otherwise, you add your own butter, eggs and vanilla to the mix and incorporate them in exactly the same way (including creaming the butter and sugar) as you would for a homemade cake. The instructions that come with the cake are very clear and easy to follow.
The cake is divided baked in three 8-inch (or 9-inch) layers and baked, then the layers are stacked with either a whipped cream frosting or a chocolate ganache. Both frosting recipes are included on the box and, again, are easy to make. In fact, the instructions included with the cake include instructions to make the cake look exactly like the cake pictured on the box – right down to the flower petals that they used to garnish their cake – and also include a few notes about adding different flavors to the frostings for different effects. The ganache is simple, but excellent, and that is what I chose to frost my cake.
The cake was excellent. Moist and tender, it had a very dark chocolate flavor and was not too sweet. This was especially true after the dark chocolate ganache was added to the cake. It was a very good cake and definitely tasted gourmet, though I’ll also note that it delivered very similar results to my recipe for Classic Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Ganache Frosting. Overall, I was very happy with the results, the instructions and the inclusion of the frosting recipes (where most mixes leave you hanging). I’d try their other mixes in the future to see if they meet the same standard, and, while I would consider making this cake mix again, I would definitely put it down as a great gourmet gift for a chocolate loving friend – especially if they’re interested in baking and gourmet chocolate.