Published On: Fri, Mar 25th, 2011

6 Ways to Celebrate American Chocolate Week

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ONE: Cook with Chocolate

If you’re looking for an awesome cookbook, try a couple of our old standbys—or some new faves: Making Artisan Chocolates by Andrew Garrison Shotts; Chocolate Obsession by Recchiuti/Gage/Caruso; and Fine Chocolates: Great Experience by Jean-Pierre Wybauw.

TWO: Get Informed

American Chocolate Week’s official website is sponsored by the National Confectioner’s Association, and is actually quite comprehensive as far as growing and processing goes. It offers a look at some of the farms and communities involved in growing cacao, as well as the economic and social implications of fair wages and prices for farmers. It’s a neat site to browse around and has a lot of useful info.

THREE: Meet Like-Minded Chocolate Folk

If you’re looking to connect with other chocolate-minded nerds, The Chocolate Life is an amazing website run by all-things-chocolate expert Clay Gordon, offering a little bit of everything—classes and workshops, meetups, chocolate-centric trips, scientific discussions, equipment discounts, blog roundups, and more.

FOUR: Take a Chocolatey Vacation

The Cotton Tree Lodge in Belize offers chocolate-centric travel packages, including visits to local cacao farms and CTL’s own chocolate factory in Punta Gorda. If you’re looking to tour the other end of production, David Lebovitz offers week-long tours of his favorite chocolate destinations in and around Paris (though they sell out insanely quickly, as there’s a maximum group size of 10)

FIVE: Buy Some Chocolate

World Wide Chocolate carries every major brand of high-quality chocolate we’ve ever heard of, and a bunch that we haven’t. Blocks, chips, cocoa powder, gift baskets…it’s pretty much all there. Good luck leaving the site without buying something.

SIX: Head to Your Local Chocolate Shop

But really, truly, honestly—the best way to celebrate American Chocolate Week is to go out and eat some chocolate. And the best place to start doing that, in my humble opinion, is in your neighborhood. Look up a chocolate shop near your place and make a trip—try some stuff, have a chat, ask questions. At the very least it’s more interesting than a trip to the grocery store, and you’ll likely discover a new favorite spot to satisfy your sweet tooth.

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