Hello Chocolate Nation!

Although I’m officially kicking off Red, White and Chocolate right after the NW Chocolate Festival in Seattle October 4th, you all know I’m already on the road and meeting so many great chocolate folk.  I’ve finished up interviewing some of the luminaries in Las Vegas and those will be some of my first posts (as soon as I can sit for a few minutes to write it all up).  You’re going to learn from Jean-Marie Auboine (chocolatier to 80% of the Las Vegas Strip hotels), experience the chocolate magic of JinJu Chocolates and hear from the “rebel with a cause” Paul Edward of Chef Rubber. Stay tuned!

Letterpress Chocolate 

But for now, I wanted to share a quick mention of David Menkes of Letterpress Chocolate, a startup bean-to-bar (and sometimes tree-to-bar) maker in southern California.  I had the pleasure of meeting him yesterday.  He gave me my first ever taste of a cacao bean – three different beans, actually. We always remember our first, don’t we? These were Oko and Le Red, both from the Dominican Republic, and Kokoa Kamille from Tanzania.

David Menkes in his bean library at Letterpress Chocolate.
David Menkes in his bean library at Letterpress Chocolate.

Then he let me taste the chocolate he made from each of the three beans. Amazing experience. This young man is going places in the chocolate world!

David "geeking out" on the science of chocolate making.
David “geeking out” on the science of chocolate making.

If you’re going to be in Seattle for the Chocolate Makers Unconference and NW Chocolate Festival, you have a chance to be part of a Letterpress unveiling at Tesla in Seattle on Wednesday Sept 30th. They’ll be talking about craft chocolate vs. bulk commodity chocolate, and David will reveal his newest origin (I got to taste it yesterday and it’s amazing!).  Use the discount code tesla and get in for only $25.


Enjoy! I’ll be on the road and won’t be able to attend, so let me know how it is.