chocolate adventure event #1.
Last Wednesday was spent in San Francisco helping to host the Scharffen Berger Chocolate Maker and TuttiFoodie.com’s Chocolate Adventure Contest Events held for food bloggers and members of the media based around San Francisco. There will be another post about the contest itself because I have learned so much at this event to justify a separate blog post (like there ever has to be any justification for this). A second event was planned for Thursday, but with Robert Steinberg’s passing, SB decided to postpone it.
Orson, Elizabeth Falkner’s new restaurant on 4th Street was the venue. Food Bloggers such as Melissa from the Wine Chef, Anita from Dessert First and Michael Procopio mingled, checked out the Adventure Ingredients & SB’s product display (put together by yours truly) and ate adventurous chocolate appetizers (fried pig skins dipped in chocolate?) put together by the Orson staff.
We all sat down for a blind taste test held by John Scharffenberger (one of the creators of SBCM, click here to read his tribute to his friend’s passing). He had guests try unsweetened chocolate from Madagascar, Trinidad and Venezuela as he discussed how each region provides different flavors of cacao, thus providing a final product where each of the unique flavors complete each other.
The end result in this case is the Finisterra Bar, SBCM’s 10th Anniversary chocolate bar, a perfect blend of all three regions. Participates then tried this bar and some were even able to taste the hit of citrus from Madagascar and the spicy cinnamon flavor of Trinidad cacao
Afterwards Elizabeth showcased some more courses that combined chocolate and an adventurous ingredient from the contest ingredient list (the avocado, mango and cacao nib salad was amazing) while she discussed using exotic ingredients and how any chef – professional and at home – should never be afraid of being adventurous with ingredients.
Cheryl Mazak’s photos:
My most memorable experience was sitting down with Marcia Gagliardi from the tablehopper (and the event coordinator) and a few others discussing how people don’t seem to enjoy food anymore. Everyone is worried about the fat/calorie content of their meal or in my case most weekdays, they are too busy to even bother tasting the food — To truly enjoy and appreciate the meal that they are eating. This conversation made me question my reasoning behind why it is that I always feel that I am too busy to take a little extra time to make something before work for lunch, or hell, why I don’t even make the time to go to the store to buy any ingredients to make anything.
Hopefully this will change when I move in with my new roommates in two weeks.