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Sweet sensations

For chocolate lovers, it comes as no surprise that eating fine chocolates is a lot like drinking wine. Chocolove, premium chocolate maker from Boulder, Colo., has the following tips for enjoying a chocolate bar:

Taste the chocolate at room temperature.

Don't drink a cold beverage just before or during tasting. A warm mouth is essential to ensure the chocolate melts quickly.

Observe the glossy surface at the top of the bar, an indication of well-made chocolate.

Break the chocolate into small squares; smell the aromas released.

Chew the chocolate briefly to release the aromas into the nasal passage at the back of the mouth.

Before swallowing, press the last bit of chocolate to the roof of your mouth with your tongue. It should feel buttery smooth.

Chocolove sells 10 kinds of chocolate bars that have suggested retail prices of $2.69 to $2.99 in more than 2,000 specialty stores, gourmet grocers, bookstores and coffee shops across the United States.

Lasagna to start the day

No time for breakfast? Think again. Here's a quick and healthful breakfast lasagna idea from the National Watermelon Promotion Board:asdfasdfdasdasdfasdd Place 1 1/3 cups of cornflakes in an even layer in the bottom of an 8-inch-by-8-inch serving dish. Mix together 2 cups of watermelon, 2 cups of fresh blueberries and 2 cups of vanilla yogurt.

Spoon half of the mixture over the cornflake layer evenly. Sprinkle another 1 1/3 cups of cornflakes over the yogurt mixture. Layer the remaining yogurt mixture on top of the cornflakes and top with another 1 1/3 cups of cornflakes. Serves 6.

Per serving: 180 calories; 6 grams protein; 1 gram fat; 1 gram saturated fat; 38 grams carbohydrate; 2 grams fiber; 4 milligrams cholesterol; 232 milligrams sodium

Hot stuff

Baltimore native Steven Raichlen has become a grilling guru through his classes, cookbooks and television appearances. Now the chef has unveiled a new line of barbecue tools and accessories.

Developed in partnership with manufacturing company the Companion Group, the Best of Barbecue line includes 50 products ranging in price from a $3.99 tin of wood chips to $39.99 for a cast-iron Tuscan grill.

Two-pronged bamboo skewers ($8 for 16) help hold vegetables in place and an innovative rib rack (left) holds a whole rack of ribs upright ($25).

Look for the products in gourmet and specialty cookware stores nationwide. For more information, visit

Dishing it out

Let's Dish!, the Timonium store that allows you to assemble your dinners and carry them home, has introduced an even quicker meal option -- Dish!-n-Dash.

The new pickup service lets you order online, drive to the store, pack up your meals and take them home. Customers have a choice of eight to 12 meals from the monthly menu and can select items that are individually packaged.

Prices are $180 for eight meals, $240 for 12 meals. For more information, visit


Learn about Washington's whiskey at the ninth annual Evening of Traditional Beverages 6 p.m. June 17 at the Homewood House Museum, 3400 N. Charles St. $25. Call 410-516-6710.

The Maryland Great Grapes Wine & Music Festival will be held noon to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at Oregon Ridge Park in Cockeysville. $20 at the door, $15 in advance. Call 410-769-8223.

Take a peek behind the scenes of Gourmet magazine with the Gourmet Institute, which offers discussions, cooking demonstrations and hands-on experience, Oct. 21 to Oct. 23, at the magazine's headquarters in New York City. $1,350 for the weekend. Call 888-308-6133 or visit

Learn to make Asian treats, including sushi, 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. June 15 at Williams-Sonoma, 70 Village Square in the Village of Cross Keys. $40. Call 410-435-6020.

Enjoy a Low Country dinner and cooking demonstration 6 p.m. June 20 at the Nantucket-on-the-Severn Designer Showhouse, 517 Scrimshaw Lane, Severna Park. $65 a person. For more information, visit www.facetswoman. com or call 410-647-7231.

The Dish welcomes food news and notes. Send to The Dish, Attn.: Liz Atwood, The Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, MD 21278; fax to 410-783-2519; e-mail

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