Chocolate, Chocolate and Still More Chocolate

Today was the day I finally braved the Paris subway system. I’ve spent my first few days walking as far as my feet would carry me; but now, I’ve mostly run out of places that are quickly accessible by foot. I’d been reluctant to descend into its depths because of all the warnings I had read about pickpockets which are rampant on the Paris subways. But I kept telling myself, it couldn’t be any harder to master than the New York or Rome subways. So, I finally took the plunge all because of chocolate–my biggest vice.

The Salon du Chocolate Show arrived in Paris a couple of days after I did. It is a 5 day extravaganza of chocolate decadence with some wine and champagne mixed in to help clear the palate. And let me tell you after an hour of tasting chocolate samples, you begin to look for anything that isn’t made of chocolate, no matter how much you love it. There is so much chocolate it’s almost overwhelming. Piles and piles of chocolate as far as the eye can see–truffles, bars, dipped fruit, chocolate shaped like flowers, sculpture, chocolate fountains, liquid chocolate to drink, paintings and even dresses adorned with chocolate.

For the last two years I’ve attended the annual chocolate show in New York City. But, Paris is the grand-daddy of them all. The Salon du Chocolate draws the finest chocolatiers from all over the world–Europe, Mexico, Brazil, Russia, Japan, and the Ivory Coast just to name a few. If you can make it from chocolate, it was on display for tasting or purchase at the show.






My favorite chocolatier to watch is Mary’s chocolate from Japan. Aside from the interesting and unusual flavors (like green tea ganache), they’re always making something unique. This year they were making chocolate origami.

I had a lovely chat with a Canadian chocolatier from Alberta. She had one of the heaviest Canadian accents I’ve heard in ages. I think she was just as happy to get to speak English for a bit as I was.

The most interesting sample I tried today was from Mexico. It was some sort of chocolate fondue that had meat in it with a chocolate cinnamon flavor with just a hint of spice and heat. The mixture was drizzled over bread and it was just out of this world. I went back later for a second taste, but they were all out.

And if you got tired of tasting chocolate, there was plenty of entertainment from cooking demonstrations to Mexican dancers on a stage.

By the time I had spent two hours there, I was in chocolate overload. I bought a box of unusual Japanese chocolates to take to my coworkers and a couple of little chocolate pieces for myself and then scooted out of there. There is only so much chocolate even a chocolate lover can take in one day. Generally, after attending one of these shows, I don’t even want to see or smell chocolate for several days afterward. The New York chocolate show is the weekend after I come home, but I think I’ll skip it this year. It can only be anti-climatic after Paris. Maybe some day I’ll make it to one of the shows in Moscow, Tokyo, or Beijing. But, I can officially say that I’m all chocolated out for now.

2 Responses to “Chocolate, Chocolate and Still More Chocolate”

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hey! Where’s mine?! 😉 You go to Paris and forget about your other PA friends. *sniff*

  2. Sara says:

    “I bought a box of unusual Japanese chocolates to take to my coworkers and a couple of little chocolate pieces for myself and then scooted out of there.”

    umm…..none for your favorite little sister?

    There goes your christmas present!