Wednesday, December 30, 2015

LA Chocolate Festival & Pastry Show 2015

The Sweetest Day of the Year was on December 27th at The Olympic Collection where the LA Chocolate Festival & Pastry Show was presented by JetBlue Airways.
In addition to mint drinks JetBlue also poured a very good Turley Zinfandel.
JetBlue celebrated Mint, which is refreshing new take on a premium coast-to-coast experience.

The show benefited the St. Baldrick's Foundation, a childhood cancer charity that funds the most promising research to help find cures for kids with cancer. They are also known as the crazy head-shaving people.
Kathleen Ruddy, Chief Executive Officer of St. Baldrick's Foundation
One of the first tables in the large ballroom was hosted by Moreno BHLV, where they poured some great big sparkling wines.
Chef Natalie Pukasemvarangkoon, a graduate of UCLA, served a variety of tasty chocolate treats. Paleo Collective is her culinary start-up that emphasizes the Paleo diet. It focuses on nutrient-dense foods with vegetables, nuts, seeds and proteins that help the body to operate at maximum capacity.

QKabob set up a very nicely decorated table of food. Vazgen Ghahremanians founded Q Kabob as a source for Persian food and since then has expanded to Party Rentals, Waiters, Waitresses, Bartenders, Valet Parking, Security Guards, Fruit Designs, DJ, Flowers, and much more.

The gumbo and jambalaya are awesome from Chef D.J. Seals Catering, but she also makes a flaming good meatball (about 120 Proof) that pairs well with the chocolate from the fountain.
Krave Jerky was a good starter snack. I tried the Grilled Sweet Teriyaki Pork and the Sweet Chipotle Beef.
Rustic Foods makes artisan breads, natural foods, and homemade desserts. Their cookies and chocolate pastries were great!

Jean-Marie Auboine Chocolatier had some very interesting and colorful chocolates! I especially like the golf ball ganache.

Choctál makes high-quality product with the most delicious, single-origin chocolate and vanilla flavor profiles the world has to offer. Wow!
Chef Keven Lee boogies out some Chocolate Pot Du Blue. The Columbian Coffee Chipotle Short Ribs looked good too!
Chef Damien Bagely & Chef Angela Sweetser with Chef Robert Teddy, M. Antoinette Cakes, winner of Food Network’s Halloween Wars and also on Cake Wars Christmas. Their New Year’s Eve Glitter Balls were festive looking. (It’s OK the FDA has approved this edible glitter!) They were yummy, but you had to watch out for the glitter traces.

Mark Lewis Owner/Chef at Marco Paolo Chocolates is one of the few chocolatiers to make two-layered paired ganache truffles. The Lakers Girls seemed to be very interested in Mark’s chocolates.

Luxe Rodeo Drive Hotel & Luxe Sunset Boulevard Hotel created some great chocolate treats by Executive Chef Oliver Rousell. Chocolate Napoleon bites are at the top.

Chocolate mousse from Kriss Harvey, executive pastry chef of SLS Hotel at Beverly Hills. It was fantastic display of desserts; they don't monkey around.

Chef Matt Dhillon’s Bruschetta was just the start of his 5 course pasta tasting, it was all outstanding!
Fattoria Del Vicario Gorgonzolla Cream Spaghetti.
Chef Matt Dhillon contemplating his Fattoria Del Vicario Gemeli with Roasted Bone Marrow Sauce finished with Cashel Blue Cheese & Toasted Herb Breadcrumbs and his Chocolate Rotini.
Chef Matt Dhillon's team serving his very popular pasta.

Kerrygold USA uses milk from grass-fed cows to make Kerrygold butters and cheeses.
I always stop for a Nature’s Bakery On-The-Go Snack, they're crafted with thoughtful ingredients and they stack well!
SavanaLilly Jewelry with necklaces, earrings, bracelets and rings for casual or elegant wear. Ask Sharon for a deal!
Chef April of Kreative Made Kreations told me, "We're out of food, because it was sooo good!"
The team at the Academy of Culinary Education, started by Cecilia M. de Castro, served up some decorative chocolates.

Marsatta Chocolate serving their Bean 2 Bar artisan hand-crafted chocolates and selling some very good dark chocolate bars.

Brandy Wong’s Sweet Temptations were expertly arranged and looked delicious. I wonder if anyone tried to warm them up over the flame on the plastic spoons?

Fresh Brothers, Pizza-Salad-Wings serving their Cheese Pizza and The Miller Special (with sausage, pepperoni, ground beef, bacon and ham).
Farm Fresh To You is a subscription community that provides organic fruits and vegetables. They're located in Capay Valley and they have beautiful looking produce.

Executive Chef Tamera Anderson of Sugar & Spyked serving some Tequila-spyked goodies.
Tiffany Swinson, founder of Something Good 2 Eat (SG2E), made some fantastic Spiced Blueberry Cocoa Chicken Waffle Bites. SG2E is a full catering service that specializes in Creole and American Cuisine cuisines.
Executive Chef Max Bobritsky was one of the chefs helping SG2E.
ABM Medical Clinic & Cosmetic Laser Service served some cotton candy bites.

Health Chef Denise Portillo makes a great taco mole! And thanks to Barry Callebaut for the donation of chocolate to the festival!

Kerrygold USA uses milk from grass-fed cows to make their great cheeses.
Customers who fly on JetBlue Mint enjoy scoops of Brooklyn-based Blue Marble, the only certified organic ice cream brand native to NYC.
My first taste of the show was this creamy mocha made by Coffee Catering LA, YUM!

Henri-Luc Martin, co-owner (with Frank Sciotto), Natasha Swords and Abel Hernandez were proudly serving their unbeatable cocktail collection. I tried the Cosmopolitan.
Photo by Turiya Wines
Winemaker Angela Soleno’s small production Turiya Wines are worth signing up for on their “List.” I liked them all, especially the "Hither" red blend. They were pouring:
  • 2009 Hither (65% Petite Verdot + 35% Malbec), Solana Vineyard, Paso Robles
  • 2009 Malbec, Solana Vineyard, Paso Robles
  • 2009 Petite Verdot, Solana Vineyard, Paso Robles
  • 2008 Syrah (Library), Camp 4 Vineyard
Sunland Vintage Winery owners Debby & Mike Giovinazzo poured an interesting varietal, a 2013 Teroldego. It pairs very well with chocolate!

DIABOLO (commonly misspelled Diablo) provided their all natural, sparkling refreshment - with a Refreshment Collection and an Energizing Collection.
Canyon Crest Winery poured their wines with a variety of flavors: toasted caramel, raspberry mocha, coffee, orange, cherry and almond.
Tatratea is a tea liqueur that starts with a molasses base from sugar beets and is combined with brewed black assam tea and botanical ingredients, fresh fruits and fermented in a revolutionary process. The alcohol levels range from 32% to 72% and they really pack a punch. I tried the Original flavor at 52%.
People loved the chocolate martinis and the blackberry & champagne from Pochteca Liqueurs.
Navarro Vineyards poured their wines from Anderson Valley and Mendocino. The 2013 Pinot Noir was popular.
Plenty of other fine drinks were available:
Schlägl Abtei Pils beer
Manuela Zaretti-Carling pouring her Ventura Limoncello.
TeQava, Sparkling Tequila made with 100% Blue Weber Agave Triple Distilled Tequila, from Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico.
Godiva Dark Chocolate Liqueur and Baileys Espresso Crème were both good, but even better mixed together! And it was very good with a New Year’s Eve Glitter Ball from Chef Robert Teddy.

Brooke Lewis, Life Coach, Dating Expert and Entertainment Consultant, hosted the event.
The Lakers Girls introduction on stage was followed by an autograph session with their group picture., the big selfie booth was popular.  Smile! And write something funny that you won't mind seeing on this blog ...

Alan Semsar is everywhere, all at once; whether he's catching a selfie with VIPs or introducing them on stage, he's the man who puts it all together.
And that's a wrap!

Cheers & Happy New Year!

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