Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Thoroughly butter 4 – 6 oz custard cups and coat inside with cocoa powder, tap out excess. Place on a baking sheet. Make caramel and allow to cool. Place a heaping tablespoon of cold/cool caramel to the bottom of each ramekin.
To make the Salted Caramel Topping, place sugar and water in a 4 quart saucepan, heat over medium heat - swirling pan gently just enough to even out sugar in bottom. Cook until sugar turns a deep amber color. Stir in butter pieces, whisking until melted. Whisk in cream until mixture is smooth. Add a pinch of salt. Transfer to a bowl and allow to cool. Store in refrigerator until ready to use.
To make the lava cakes, melt chocolate and butter over a double broiler until almost melted, (can be done in the microwave as well) - remove from heat, stir in brown sugar, flour and cocoa powder until smooth. Stir in eggs - one at a time, add vanilla. Divide the mixture between the ramekins. Bake 15 minutes. Remove from oven and cool for 5 minutes or so.
In a mixer, beat egg yolks, egg and sugar until light and fluffy. Add vanilla and a pinch of salt, beat a bit more. Add flour and beat until blended. Fold in chocolate mixture with a spatula.
To serve - Invert a plate over each ramekin and carefully turn over and remove the cup. Dust with powdered sugar or add another small spoon full of caramel and a pinch of flaky salt - or a scoop of ice cream would be decadent too. You can also serve these lava cakes in the ramekins and top with your desired topping. Serve immediately.
Kunde Family Winery 1904 Dessert Cuvee