Survival by Chocolate
Blue Frog Chocolates, New Orleans
New Orleans-based Blue Frog Chocolates has been back in business since Oct. 24. Among its best sellers with people who have visited the shop since the city was devastated by Hurricane Katrina are the Chocolate Survival Kit -- chocolate syringes and chain saws as well as liqueur-filled candies. Next, the company plans a "Trash Pile" confection: lo-mein noodles and raisins, drizzled with chocolate.
"If you don't laugh, you'll cry," says owner Ann Streiffer of the shop's imaginative offerings. In addition to other homemade, New Orleans-specific novelty items -- such as chocolate alligators and crayfish, and its signature frog chocolates -- the store also carries high-end brands such as Michael Cluizel and Joseph Schmidt. Gift baskets start at $35, plus shipping.