Today, Monday, March 3rd is the national launch date for an ambitious new line of chocolate products from Starbucks. But don't go looking for them at your local Starbucks coffeehouse because you won't find them there. In an interesting branding twist, Starbucks Chocolates will initially be made available through mass retailers, grocery stores, and drug stores and it is unclear when, if ever, you will be able to buy them at the counter where you order your half-caf no-foam skim latte every… Continue
Added by Clay Gordon on March 27, 2008 at 5:39pm —
The World Pastry Forum is a series of five-day intensive programs (demo and hands-on) offered immediately prior to the National or World Pastry Team Championship. Both the forum and the championship are organized by a company called Carymax, one of whose founders is one of the founders of Chocolatier Magazine. This year's events are being held at the Gaylord Opryland Hotel in Nashville, TN, August 26-30 with the World Championship immediately thereafter.
This year's Demo… Continue
Added by Clay Gordon on March 27, 2008 at 11:00am —
One thing I’ve learned about a start up business is that there is a disconnect between production and sales. You either have too much product and can’t sell it or you have too many sales and can’t fill them. It can be very nerve racking but I think it’s fairly par for the course. Especially when you’re manufacturing a brand new product like I am with Brownie Shotz.
If you’re buying your product, the same thing holds true. How much do you buy so that… Continue
Added by Jim Sanders on March 26, 2008 at 11:21pm —
Terrific! Someone out there has encouraged me to continue my story (thanks Carol) so that’s enough for me.
Well, after the first blush of starting a new business wore off a bit, it came time to figure out how to really make Brownie Shotz
a going concern. For the first few months, I kept baking brownies in my kitchen, refining my product as I went along. I made a few sales but it was very evident from the start I’d need help, especially in the… Continue
Added by Jim Sanders on March 23, 2008 at 10:07pm —
Yesterday was the first anniversary of Brownie Shotz
and I wanted to mark the occasion somehow. I thought I would relate my adventures thus far. (I wanted to do this yesterday but I got too busy). So anyhow, one year ago (the first day of spring) I had dinner with a friend and one of her clients. The client (whom I hadn't met before) had started a potato chip business several months earlier. As he related the story of how he started, I became more and… Continue
Added by Jim Sanders on March 21, 2008 at 1:01pm —
Interesting article on "Four hybrid cocoa species developed in Ghana to have improved resistance to pest damage during storage have similar nutritional properties to conventional cocoa, says a study that topples a barrier to commercial trade."
Ghanaian cocoa hybrids have no nutritional drawbacks
I can't help but wonder, in comparison, how do they taste?
Added by Sera on March 18, 2008 at 11:30pm —
The Mark Hotel in Manhattan (no longer a part of the Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group, located on E 77th St.) has regularly hosted wine classes directed by Master Sommelier Richard Dean.
In 2004, the program was expanded to showcase the pairing of wine and chocolate and to do so it enlisted the support of Valrhona and the winemaker Louis Jadot. Representing Valrhona were Mr. Bernard Duclos, the director of US operations for Valrhona, Kim O'Flaherty, their US Corporate Pastry Chef, and… Continue
Added by Clay Gordon on March 17, 2008 at 10:35am —
Colin Gasko has released his next three origin chocolates — Jamaica, Hispaniola, and Trinidad. Like his first two releases, these chocolates are all 70%.
My earlier post about Rogue Chocolatier
has all the background info and includes reviews of the first two bars, Ocumare and Sambirano. Trinidad and Hispaniola chocolates were purchased at Kitchen Window, and the Jamaica was purchased at… Continue
Added by Casey on March 12, 2008 at 4:56pm —
Clay Gordon is leading a small group of us throughout Europe upon a 5-star quest for the best chocolate in Switzerland, France & Belgium in July.
CALLING ALL CHOCOLATE LOVERS to join us inside the salons, factories and kitchens of Felchlin, Bonnat, Pralus and Bernachon. We will be personally introduced to world-class master chocolatiers and sample a good deal of chocolate throughout this spectacular and once-in-a-lifetime journey!
Enjoy sumptuous multi-course dinners… Continue
Added by Holly & Paul Stabin on March 8, 2008 at 3:43pm —
"Since its foundation, the United Nations system has been collecting statistical information from member states on a variety of topics. The information thus collected constitutes a considerable information asset of the organization. However, these statistical data are often stored in proprietary databases, each with unique dissemination and access policies. As a result, users are often unaware of the full array of statistical information that the UN system has in its data libraries. The current… Continue
Added by Clay Gordon on March 7, 2008 at 12:30am —
Local press coverage of the 6th Annual Death by Chocolate Festival at Copia can be found here
Copia bills itself as the American Center for Wine, Food, and the Arts and on February 23rd they should have added chocolate into that title somewhere - at least for the day. California and Ziad Kurjie of the US operations of Patchi Chocolates (who are headquartered in Lebanon).
I had the pleasure… Continue
Added by Clay Gordon on February 27, 2008 at 2:30pm —
I am a friend of Clay's. He helped me get my start in the chocolate industry. A lot has happened since he gave me my first advice 5 years ago! Everything from Food Network to Newsweek, opening and closing my first chocolate shop and now writing a book that will be released nationwide in September of 2008. Life is exciting and delicious!
I have a lot of successes and some failures that will be great food for thought for some of you. Feel free to post questions on my blog and I will… Continue
Added by Bethany Thouin on February 26, 2008 at 1:57pm —
The Academy of Chocolates has announces the winners of the Chocolate Awards for 2008
. I think many of you will be pleased with the results.
I, for one, feel tickled that I'm familiar with most of the names and bars, but also that I've been lucky enough to taste some of them too. If nothing else, this list will work as a good starting point for my next chocolate order. :)
Added by Sera on February 26, 2008 at 12:06am —
Here's a question for any seriously informed chocolate people. What's the story with the Smith (aka W.C. Smith) company? The used enrober market is peppered with Smith machines, and a quick search turns up enrober patents listed under a W Smith & Sons Inc. My search for info on the company that makes/made these machines has been fruitless, however. Are they closed? Were they bought out? Is the Smith line currently made/supported by another company? Is it some kind of national… Continue
Added by Brendan on February 21, 2008 at 5:59pm —
I've noticed a trend that disturbs me. There are enough misconceptions and unjustified biases in the chocolate world already; it's time this one was laid to rest. I've seen it time and again, in news features and in company literature. I saw it just now. As interest in fine chocolate rises and the number of domestic bean-to-bar manufacturers rises (thank goodness), I see it more often.
"We don't just melt other people's chocolates."
The sentiment is a fair one, but it's so… Continue
Added by Brendan on February 18, 2008 at 2:30pm —
I am spending the year in Israel with the goal of interviewing every chocolatier in the country. So far I'm about halfway through. If you have questions about choc in Israel or kosher chocolate, I'm your woman. My blog, Chocolatespeak
is also a great resource.
Added by Sandra Andrews-Strasko on February 18, 2008 at 6:46am —
Last November Canadian Competition Bureau began investigating Canadian divisions of Hershey, Cadbury, Nestle, and Mars on suspicion of price fixing. Last week, the German Federal Cartel office raided the offices and seized documents from the German headquarters of Nestle, Kraft, and Mars, for the same reason.
Read more on BBC
and ABC… Continue
Added by Casey on February 13, 2008 at 7:44pm —
Review: Chocolate tour of Paris with David Lebovitz
(note that he is not currently giving private tours but he is doing a
week-long, small group "Paris Chocolate Adventure")
In 2003 my wife and I made our own chocolate wedding cake from a recipe from David's book "Room for Dessert." In 2005 I had an exhibition in Paris and in our research on where to… Continue
Added by ari salomon on February 11, 2008 at 6:23pm —
This is my second article on how to buy chocolate for Yahoo! Personals.
Added by Clay Gordon on February 7, 2008 at 10:49pm —
Global confectioners Mars and Nestle have joined a sustainable cocoa
programme, which aims to establish a traceability system for all
farmers in the Ivory Coast.
The Good Inside Cocoa Programme, established by the Dutch non-profit organisation Utz Certified, aims to eliminate environmental and humanitarian problems such as child labour, deforestation and low salaries.
consumer and regulatory concern over working conditions in… Continue
Added by Clay Gordon on February 7, 2008 at 10:38pm —