October 26, 2010

Chocolate, Chocolate, and Chocolate, Oh My!


The chocolate festival was amazing. I started the day with a feeling of anticipation and left with an enormous theobromine buzz. The festival ran from 10 - 6 pm, but I decided to show up at 2:00 pm, because I knew it would be dangerous to spend 8 hours around free chocolate, that was the dietitian in me talking.  I recruited a couple of close friends to share in the experience and they were truly thankful. When I arrived at the festival, I was directed to a room with 4 or 5 chocolate booths. I started my first tasting at Hot Cakes Confectionery based in Seattle. Their salted caramel sauce, molten chocolate cake in a mason jar, and dark peanut butter truffles were to die for. I then moseyed over to Forte Artisan Chocolate , also based in Washington, for their amazing salted caramels. They had a few other tasty treats including the orange jazz bar and white bar. I also sampled their Aztec Soul bar, but the jalapeno and chipotle peppers were a little to spicy for me.

As I scurried around the room trying to take in as much information and free tastings as I can, one of my friends, ever to so kindly, reminded me that there is not one but two rooms full of chocolate. I think to myself, how can I possibly eat more chocolate. You must understand, this is not because I am full, but because I am running on a huge theobromine high, please refer to my blog post on Theo Chocolate for a description of theobromine. Ninety-five percent of the chocolate I sampled was between 75 - 90 % chocolate. I enter the second room with hesitation but knew I had to conquer. I start my first tasting with a pomegranate Lime Bar from The Chocolate Conspiracy that sent me through the roof and unfortunately had to stop sampling chocolate at that point and take a rest.

Once I regained consciousness I marched on like the chocoholic that I am. I moved on to Taza Chocolate. Taza Chocolate is unique in that they are the only producer in the US of 100% stone ground, organic chocolate. They roast, winnow, grind, temper, and mold their chocolate in house by hand. Pretty darn amazing.

Next is Fresco Chocolate, who by far had the most tastiest chocolates (loved the Ghana and Jamaican) and the most enthusiastic chocolatier around. Absolutely a joy to talk to!



Next I learned how to make chocolate with Cotton Tree Lodge.

Finally, I ended the day with Claudio Corallo chocolates. Claudio spends his time in Sao Tome and Principe, 2 tiny African Islands were he makes his chocolate and ships it to Washington to be enjoyed by people like me.



I would like to thank the Northwest Chocolate Festival for providing me with the most amazing chocolate experience imaginable.

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