Philippe Lewis and the Edible Love Chocolates Booth
Just as we felt surfeited on all things chocolate and had decided to take our leave, I spotted chef Elizabeth Falkner (Citizen Cake, Orson) of Food Network fame heading to the back to give a presentation. My kids are serious Food Network Junkies; I turned to Mel: "Do you mind, can we go watch?" Falkner's presentation was simple and entertaining. She recapped one of the courses served at Orson on Valentine's Day — chocolate bonbons paired with various aromatics and offered to a blindfolded partner. Drawing three eager volunteers and applying blindfolds ("I call this bon-bondage"), Falkner proceeded to show the changes to the palate when visual knowledge is removed. While the blindfold demonstration was interesting, the real take-home lesson was that almost anything (parmesan, anyone?) can be paired with chocolate if one is fearless enough.
Fearlessness and chocolate. That was a good enough message for me. We left the 2010 San Francisco Chocolate Salon satisfied, inspired, and a little caffeine- and sugar-buzzed.
All photos courtesy of Mel Welcher, 2010