As Seen on "Unique Sweets": Hooker’s

     If it hasn’t caught on around you yet, let me tell you about the latest sweet treat fad: salt.
It’s not even that it’s new, or that Hooker’s started something completely radical. But I’ve found it everywhere in the city: on top of chocolate chip cookies, in fancy grinders showing off fancier colors (Himalayan pink, anyone?), ice cream, and soap. Kinfolk Magazine has even written a letter (from pepper) to salt, to slow its roll. Here, Hook is using salt to truly enhance the flavors coming out of his confections. And it works.
     Again, I actually walked past this small and adorable place on my way to it. Very hole-in-the-wall, grab-your-coffee-on-the-way-to-work kinda place (they sell SF’s Sight Glass coffee here too).

     Exhibit A: Party Girl Caramel – “she’s a sassy and spicy sweet treat with plenty of fun in every bite…she’s loaded with toasted pecans, coconut, corn cereal, pretzel bits, and sits on a smoked sea-salted dark chocolate base.” So some of the descriptions weird me out a little, but check it out – all that in one caramel. There’s caramel in that, right? Yes…I think so. I went for a “Straight Boyfriend” (make that descriptions and names), pictured below: with peanuts and a graham cracker base, if I remember correctly.

     “We’re about aesthetics.” That’s what Matt told me when we discussed a potential photo project with Hook, the owner and creator of Hooker’s. This is clear. Check out the cocoa nibs on top of that white-chocolate dipped caramel.

     The original gangster, right here. This is where it’s at. If you’re going to buy a $2 caramel, go straight to the source of inspiration/the most caramel you can get in one go. No extras, no fillers. Just caramel and chocolate. And salt.

     I would call Hook’s flavors and combinations…thoughtful. There are a lot of different things going on with his caramels, but not so many things in one caramel that you can’t appreciate the flavor of the caramel itself. But I like me a good classic treat. Especially if I’m a n00b to the game and need to know what I’m getting into.

     The one thing I knew I had to try when I went though was the caramel bar, where they flatten a cookie base onto a baking sheet and throw a bunch of original caramels on it so they melt right onto the cookie. It was just as good as it sounds. If you’re wondering how I think that sounds, SO GOOD.
Definitely at the top of my list. If you’re into San Francisco-priced dessert. $2 for a caramel and $3 for a bar. But hey, it’s a treat-yoself kinda place.

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