Day 324: Chocolate

When you get invited to a do at Bernard Callebaut’s, you go. This particular soirée was to reveal the chocolate dress Paul Hardy created with the Chocolaterie for the Salon au Chocolat fashion show in Paris.

I went mostly out of curiosity – how does a dress made out of chocolate not melt? CB chocolate melts at 31 degrees; body temperature is around 37. And of course because it was being held at Bernard’s headquarters, and Bernard parties always involve plenty of chocolate.

Even hot in a cup, which I almost cried with joy over; I’ve been jonesing for real hot chocolate since leaving JPL. Bernard makes his with his chocolate shavings, of course, and Vital Green Farms whole milk. y.u.m. Reasonably, it was served out of wee espresso cups rather than the Venti-sized cups I was using in Jasper. Like hot chocolate shooters. If you’re in the hood, you can saddle up to his counter in the corner of the shop and get one for yourself. I don’t know why they don’t sell this stuff at every coffee shop in the city. (Mochas at Beano.)

The dress in a nutshell:

Pleated upper bodice of silk tulle designed to mimic the steps of a Mayan temple; organic cotton bodice dyed in BC hot chocolate, overlaid with copped mesh to reflect the industrial revolution at the time when chocolate was evolving from drink to confection.

Skirt ruffles hand-stencilled with white and dark chocolate and adorned with chocolate covered pretzels and over 500 eyelets. Elaborate headpiece adorned with cocoa beans and chocolate dipped feathers. Accessories: raw cocoa bean jewellery.

(Had it been up to me I would have chosen a more voluptuous model. Skinny just doesn’t scream chocolate the same way soft and curvy does. I’d settle for even a few curves, like Juliette Binoche in Chocolat.)

Since it was from 5:30-7 and I stayed for about three times as long as I planned to, I ate enough to count as dinner. (It wasn’t all chocolate; Dominique from the new L’Epicerie French Deli next door supplied plenty of puffy-pastry-cheesy things, and some duck and salmon things that looked great but I didn’t try.) M and W had leftover lamb, and whole wheat rotini, pumpkin loaf, and whatever else they could scrounge up. And I brought them a loot bag.

On the upside (I know, it’s all upside), if there’s anything that can break me of my mini Oh Henry habit it’s a box of Bernard Callebaut chocolates.


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16 comments on “Day 324: Chocolate

  1. Jen C
    November 20, 2008 at 5:31 am

    mmmmm hot chocolate…..always good stuff! Do you have a recipe for good hot chocolate or do you just heat up some chocolate milk?

  2. Jan
    November 20, 2008 at 6:12 am

    You’re living the dream!

  3. JulieVR
    November 20, 2008 at 7:28 am

    You could – OR, put chopped semi-sweet chocolate (or chocolate flakes – you can buy it by the bag at Bernard Callebaut) in the bottom of a mug, and pour warmed milk over. Let sit a minute to melt the chocolate, and stir. I imagine BC and JPL use whole milk, perhaps even part cream…

  4. Theresa
    November 20, 2008 at 8:03 am

    My first thought when I saw the photo of the model was “someone please feed her”….. yikes.

  5. Melanie
    November 20, 2008 at 8:11 am

    Did you know that whole milk is better for your heart than skim? It’s true – I live with a cardiology / obesity scientist who promotes that fact all the time. Seems there is a particular molecule that promotes heart health when it is present in milk. The process used to remove the fat / cream also removes the molecule thus less, benefit to your heart! Seems backwards I know – but I know this chick feels absolutely NO guilt (or chest pain – ha ha!) when drinking her whole milk coffee / chocolate concoctions!!!

  6. sue d.
    November 20, 2008 at 8:23 am

    ah, chocolate as the cure for a lesser chocolate. I think you make so much sense…this is logic I can really live by!

  7. Kathy
    November 20, 2008 at 9:43 am

    Hi Julie,

    Thank you so much for the One Smart Cookie cookbook I received it today and spent a delightful half hour perusing it. I have now wiped the drool off my face!

    I generally make my hot chocolate the old fashioned way off the Fry’s Cocoa powder container. I like the Cocoa Camino organic hot chocolate mixes too (no fillers, minimal sugar and they make a dark chocolate hot chocolate mix). (my favorite chocolate is dark!)

    I think after reading Melanie’s comment I’ll start using whole milk more often! Good to know! Thanks I don’t do skim – blech – but drink mostly 1%.

  8. Cheryl
    November 20, 2008 at 10:05 am

    Such luxury… can’t beat that dinner!

  9. Dana
    November 20, 2008 at 11:00 am

    If I tried to wear a chocolate dress, I’d be nude by noon. Seriously – there’s no way I could resist a nibble here and there!

  10. Lisa
    November 20, 2008 at 1:11 pm

    Back in my pre-stay-at-home-mom days, my office was a half block away from BC Headquarters. Not so good for my waist line. 😉 I have to admit that BC has made me into a total chocolate snob. No other chocolate compares! I heart BC!

  11. glenda
    November 20, 2008 at 3:12 pm

    One delightful BC chocolate is worth many, many cheaper imitations! If I’m going down, it’s going to be with the good stuff. Does that make me a chocolate snob? Let’s just say discriminating…..

  12. Betty C
    November 20, 2008 at 4:18 pm

    Hi Julie,
    Thanks so much for the One Smart Cookie cookbook I just received -can’t wait to try some of the recipes. (Love the tooth marks on the book!).
    Bernard Callebaut chocolate – is there any other kind of chocolate??? I love how he uses ‘my’ initials on all his boxes of chocolates – it always feels very decadent.

  13. Michele
    November 20, 2008 at 6:06 pm

    Thanks for leaving such a lovely comment on my site. The very strange (and quite true) thing is, the day you discovered my site, I’d actually discovered yours just hours earlier. This is what they call serendipity, I guess.

    I agree with you on the model’s lack of voluptuousness. It looks as though she hasn’t allowed herself to eat chocolate for several years. That said, I don’t particularly like chocolate myself. I only really consume it in the form of the milk dud latte I recently invented (which has been my breakfast for some days): espresso + hot milk + Nestle chocolate malted milk powder. Try it!

  14. Carolann
    November 20, 2008 at 7:45 pm

    WOW!!!! and isn’t the food from L’Epicierie great – the staff – can’t remember the young lady’s name was absolutely beautiful when they first opened. Introduced me to a variety of cheeses and of course made me great sandwich. It’s a place where one goes with an appitite and comes away full. Can’t wait until they get their wine license (or have they now?). Finish a meal there then hop over to BC for dessert and there you have it. France in a nutshell. Really envy you your latest jaunt. You’re sure you don’t need a maid or something?

  15. Carol SB
    November 20, 2008 at 8:57 pm

    Thank you to Melanie for the heart-healthy info. I have long preferred the higher-fat yogurts (balkan’s my fave), and may I presume the health benefits carry over from milk to yogurt?
    I so agree with the comments about the chocolate/ B.C.

  16. Ryan
    November 27, 2008 at 11:21 pm

    Hey Julie,

    It was so nice to meet you, I love the photo of the hot chocolate you took. They were truly delicious eh 🙂

    About the model, I think this photo does not do her justice, in person she was quite proportionate, although still quite tall, above 6 feet, however, quite lovely. Thanks Courtney for being an awesome Muse and wearing the dress and all the chocolate that went along with it…

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