Saturday, October 23, 2010

Chocolate and Heaven

Sent from inside the Smithsonian Resident Associates all-day seminar program entitled Chocolate: From Mayan Worship to Modern Wonder, hosted by the National Museum of the American Indian. (In a pleasant 4th floor room, with big floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the Mall and the elm trees turning autumnal colors. With free wifi!)

This chocolate bar was the Best Of Show bar among all the afternoon tastings IMO: Labooko Nicaragua 50, "dark-milk", made in Austria. A very close second were the Kaka'wa Cocoa Beans, made in Austin, Texas, of all places.

Morning program =
1- Mesoamerican Chocolate until 1518 (Dr. Cameron L. McNeil, anthropologist) and
2- Chocolate Becomes European, 1518-1850 (Dr. Marcy Norton, GW prof)
Afternoon program =
1- Cooking demo by the sou chef for the Mitsitam Cafe, NMAI :
 -++- Coco Seared Scallops with Argula and Orange
 -++- Chocolate and Chile Rubbed Pork Tenderloin with Pumkin Puree, Wilted Brussel Sprouts, and New Mexico Chile White Chocolate Sauce
2- Chocolate Meltdown and Tasting (run by our local chocolatier Biagio Abbatiello, owner of Biagio Fine Chocolate, and trendy and cool NYC chocolate critic Mark Christian, creator of the chocolate review site (which is not yet live, which is a cryin' shame).

☛ Elixir Makers : Kakawa Chocolate House, Santa Fe, NM
Chocolate in Mesoamerica: A Cultural History of Cacao, ed. Cameron L. McNeil (2009)
Sacred Gifts, Profane Pleasures: A History of Tobacco and Chocolate in the Atlantic World, Marcy Norton (2010)

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