Thursday, July 31, 2008

Choose Chocolate. And the darker, the better.

Luscious (and pricey) chocolate shop L. A. Burdick in Harvard Square has been keeping a running tally since Father’s Day of who’s more popular: McCain or Obama. Is it any surprise that in the People’s Republic Obama has been the consistent leader? The only other place in greater Boston where he might do better is Roxbury – if people there voted.

The tally board was the brainchild of owner Larry and chief chocolatier Mike, according to shop girl Jamie, who posts the numbers when they change significantly. There was a surge in the Obama assortments popularity when he toured Europe thanks to a boost in online sales. Online sales account for most of the numbers on the board since online demand for the assortments is bigger than that locally.

And according to Jamie, McCain wouldn’t post such robust numbers in Cambridge.

“Stupid McCain,” chimed in a local chocolate shopper.

For weeks I’d been thinking the McCain numbers weren’t that outrageous. After all, Republican Governor Bill Weld lived just a few blocks down Brattle during his tenure. The ‘stupid McCain’ comment made me see just how moderate I can be. All chocolate is good chocolate - at Burdick anyway.

Politics aside, which assortment is more authentic, daring, and progressive? I mean, dark, spicy, and alluring... Except for the Peanut Butter in his goodie box, I prefer the McCain assortment: Arizona Citrus and Hot Pepper Tequila make my mouth water more than Kansas Corn Crunch or Kenyan coffee – though I can’t say I’d pass over those either. Though my preference may be for the chocolates in the McCain box, I couldn’t actually purchase it.

That, Jamie says, is a dilemma for many in-store customers who like the McCain assortment. “I can’t really buy it,” they say.

Let’s hope it’s that way in November.

Online popularity counts for the two assortments can be found here.

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