Walking by Williamburg's crafty flea market Artists & Fleas last weekend, I spied stacks of chocolate bars wrapped in patterned papers. Stepping inside, I met Rick and Michael Mast, the brother duo who recently started Mast Brothers Chocolate, their line of artisinal chocolates.
As former room mates, the pair spent many an hour dreaming up flavor combinations until they finally scraped up enough cash to start the business. With Rick's expertise culled from stints at Gramercy Tavern, Soho House and Jacques Torres, they started cooking up such pairings as dark chocolate with pecans roasted in maple sourced from Canada, which they dub "toe-curling." Other options include dark milk and hazelnut, as well as dark and pistachio—both are excellent. Specially sourcing all their ingredients, they use primarily single-origin Venezuelan and Ecuadorian cacao for rich, flavorful results. Purists can opt for plain single-origin bars and they also offer truffles.
The paper, it turns out, is pretty special too; it's all imported from Italy. Currently exclusive to Williamsburg, you can find the chocolate at Artists and Fleas (weekends only) and at Marlow and Sons or at Spuyten Duyvil Grocery.