One hundred years ago this month, a Belgian apothecary named Jean Neuhaus Junior had the brilliant idea that chocolate might taste better if it were encased in more chocolate. And thus, the praline was born, and chocoholics worldwide have rejoiced ever since. Fast forward to 2012, and the Neuhaus name is synonymous with artfully crafted pralines (and other confections), and to celebrate their centennial creation the chocolatier has created a new line of pralines in five opulent flavors.

The name, "Precious Collection," sounds a bit over the top, but makes sense once you see the elegant shapes and taste the refined flavors. We sampled the new confections at a press preview at the Madison Avenue location last night and can confirm that they are as delicious as they are attractive. The teardrop diamond-shaped "Jade" contains velvety smooth and melty milk chocolate and honey ganache, which we greedily licked off our fingers. Equally luscious was the "Rubis," a decadent and intense dark chocolate from Papua New Guinea enclosed in a lacquered layer of extra-dark chocolate. The "Glamor," "Divine," and "Perle" flavors round out the collection, each with unique fillings of hazelnut, caramel, coffee and lots of chocolate.

Samplers of all the new pralines are available in the Precious Box ($50), which can be shipped online or picked up in any of the four NYC outlets. True, the chocolates aren't priced for the everyday indulger, but with the holidays just a month away you'll need something to impress your new flame's parents or bribe your boss around bonus time.