So a brief review and summary of this years Chocolate Show as I am hoping you still have time to head up to Olympia over the weekend.
If you are into chocolate then you really need to go and if you are interested about learning the bean to bar story there are some amazing chocolate makers from all over the world talking chocolate. Chocolatiers who have created some of the most beautiful looking and indulgent chocolates available in this country available to purchase and taste! I met Paul A Young, Aneesh Popat, 5th Dimension, to name a few. I really enjoyed talking with Lucie Bennett. Lucie is a Patissier and Chocolatier and has built a wall out of 95kg of Guittard Chocolate, very impressive! Lucie lives in West Sussex local to where I grew up and was in Country Living magazine in August.
The chocolate show has the usual Chocolate Theatre which has a great line up of Pastry Chefs and I caught Paul Young doing a talk this morning in the Tasting Room, various pairings going on, masterclasses and educational presentations from Hotel Chocolat’s School of Chocolate, and lots for the children too with the Chocolate Club. Would love to hear Chantal Coady the founder and creator of Rococo Chocolates but that is taking place at 5.30pm on Saturday. There is a Chocolate Bar with some amazing pairings,”indulge in chocolate and alcohol pairings at the Chocolate Bar. With gin, vodka, rum and tequila all perfectly matched with some of the world’s best chocolates.” I tried Holy Grass Scottish Vodka with Chocolate Tree – Rosemary and sea salt chocolate.
Plenty of stalls selling chocolate (of course) and I have to name Lauden and Octo Chocolates as a couple to check out if you do get there. Chocolate pumpkins, chocolate cars, chocolate tools and even chocolate shoes, which I think make a great present for some of my fashion conscious friends. Chocolate wine with Rubis from M-Wines and this year more chocolate inspired drinks – alcoholic and non alcoholic than before. I also love the fresh truffles and other delicious treats from local Sylvia and Terry’s.
Last year I really enjoyed the fashion show, this time there are a few Chocolate Dresses created by: Aneesh Popat – The Chocolatier, Caitlin Paxton and Madame Oiseau. New this year is the Choco L’Art Gallery “Marvel at show-stopping masterpieces entirely reimagined in chocolate from our exhibitors! The Choco L’Art Gallery includes the Mona Lisa, Banksy’s Balloon Girl, Starry Night by Van Gogh, The Kiss by Gustav Klimt and more…”
I am back on Sunday to do my shopping and just have a little more of the finest chocolates…