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The Chicago Fine Chocolate Show coming to Navy Pier

Chocolate-centric event runs Nov. 16-18 and is open to the public

  • Chocolate-covered cranberry-orange toffee from Chicago-based Terry's Toffee
Chocolate-covered cranberry-orange toffee from Chicago-based Terry's…
November 09, 2012|By Elite Truong, @elitetruong | For RedEye

Chocolate lovers, save the date: Chicago’s first-ever fine chocolate fair brings chocolate companies, candy-makers and pastry chefs from all over the world to Navy Pier on Nov. 16-18.

The Chicago Fine Chocolate Show is open to the public and held in tandem with The National Chocolate Show, a trade show for the chocolate industry.

What’s the difference between regular and fine chocolate? “Regular chocolate is what most people would consider candy -- sweet, creamy and with preservatives,” said event director Jeneane Ally. Fine chocolate artisans make use of high-grade chocolate and often combine it with “ingredients like chili pepper, lemon rinds, ginger and peanut butter.”

French Pastry School chefs will demonstrate how to make chocolate ice cream, truffles and marshmallows. There will also be educational sessions with industry professionals about how to make chocolate at home, the history of chocolate and flavor trends. 

“Chicago is the home of the confectionary business,” Ally said. “We want to open up people’s eyes to chocolate in a different way.”

General admission ($25 in advance; $30 at the door) buys you 15 sample tickets to redeem at more than 50 chocolate vendors, which include local restaurants plating both sweet and savory dishes featuring chocolate. All-access ticketholders ($35 in advance; $40 at the door) receive 15 chocolate sample tickets as well as 10 beverage sample tickets to use in the show's wine and spirits pavilion. Tickets are valid any one day of the festival: Noon-10 p.m. Nov. 16, 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Nov. 17 or 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Nov. 18.

VIP tasting tickets ($55-$75) that include express entry and access to special sessions such as a Glunz craft beer and chocolate tasting are also available.

Tickets are available through Nov. 15 at chicagochocolatefestival.com.

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