The Big Chocolate Show

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This post is sponsored by The Big Chocolate Show, but the opinions are my own. Please support our sponsors.

I LOVE chocolate. Recently I had the opportunity to attend The Big Chocolate Show in New York City. Quicker than you can say milk chocolate, my husband and I were on the train, excited to experience everything the 200+ vendors had to offer.

Big Chocolate Show
Raw Chocolate: vegan chocolates, made with organic ingredients, full of nutrients. It’s practically a vitamin, right? 

Upon entering the New Yorker Hotel, the aroma of chocolate began to tickle our noses. It was like walking into Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory. Each vendor specializes in a unique twist on chocolate from around the world. As we sampled the chocolates, cookies, coffee, and spices, the chocolatiers told us their stories. We met and spoke with so many interesting people and I could go on and on about all the amazing bites we tried.

The Big Chocolate Show
Private label chocolates from Brooklyn Born Chocolate. I tried an almond butter chocolate cup – heavenly! 

Some of my favorites were:

Loving Earth: Our first stop was Loving Earth. This Australian Company works with small producer communities around the world to create chocolate that melts in your mouth. I was impressed that they even have chocolate made with cashew milk!

Bang Cookies: My husband loves cookies, especially chocolate chip cookies, so Bang Cookies from Jersey City, NJ was another stop for us. Their menu of cookies will make your mouth water. My favorite was the kitchen sink. This cookie featured crisp organic toffee, crunchy organic pretzels, and rich organic chocolate, all in one bite.

Amore Di Mona: After indulging in samples for about an hour, I had the opportunity to watch a live demo by Amore Di Mona. This family business’s mission is to create masterpiece, artisanal, common allergen free, low glycemic, vegan chocolate that tastes divine. They taught us how to make a vegan, gluten free chocolate chiffon cake with a ganache frosting. All I can say is WOW! The skill and ease with which they ran the demo was impressive. They taught me how to use aquafaba in the meringue and they were a delight to watch. At the end we were able to taste the cake; you would honestly never know they made any substitutions.

JoMart Chocolate is celebrating 70 years of a family owned business. After a bite, I knew why! 

Burlap and Barrels: Our final stop of the day was a private tasting with Ethan Frisch of Burlap and Barrel. Ethan is a former line cook and pastry chef, who is also a humanitarian aid worker. His company works with farmers around the world to bring spices directly from cooperatives and small farms. As someone who has a passion for cooking and baking, I was enthralled to smell and taste nutmeg from Zanzibar, young and old cinnamon verum chips, and black urfa chili. They were so vibrant with fruity and chocolate undertones. The conversation was not only about where the spices came from and how to use them, but also Ethan’s work with the farmers. His company tries to support farmers and minimize their impact on the environment.  

This nutmeg, covered in mace, from Zanzibar was a treasure for this Nutmeg teacher.

As we left the show, our bellies full, our noses exhausted, and our bags full, my husband and I reflected on all we experienced at the show. We learned of so many local shops that can support various allergies, bigger shops that are doing well around the world, and most importantly, that there’s no limit to how much chocolate we can eat in a day! Until next year, thank you Big Chocolate for the show.

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Maria is a full-time mom, teacher, wife, daughter, and sister, who feels pulled in too many directions! Her older son Michael took over 24 hours to be born, and at six-months-old was diagnosed with allergies to dairy, eggs, nuts, soy, shrimp, and wheat…all after exclusively nursing because she was SO SURE that would help him be a healthy kid. Luckily at age 1, he began to outgrow some of his allergies. Fingers crossed the others will soon follow because that plus a husband who doesn’t eat any veggies and Maria always battling her weight makes for three meals to prepare every night. Luckily, Christopher, her younger son, is a cooperative eater! As someone who has always been committed to making positive change, Maria uses her privilege and position as an educator and mom to work toward a most anti-racisit, equitibile, and inclusive world. Recently, Maria has even started getting up at 5am to workout in her basement. (Thank you pandemic living!) She is addicted to reading chicklit on her Kindle app in the dark, most Trader Joe’s products, and watching TikToks.

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