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Chocolate: A Bittersweet Saga of Dark and Light

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 15, 2005

    A Delightful Quest Full of Facts and Fun

    By Bill Marsano. Mort Rosenblum has at last seen the error of his ways. After his award-winning 'Olives' of a few years ago and then a gastronomical ramble called 'A Goose in Toulouse,' he recognized that his day job as an Associated Press correspondent was a waste of his time and, more important, his wide-ranging talent and generous sensibility. And so with no wars or economic calamities to deal with he has devoted himself to chocolate, and we should be grateful for that, and for this book. Whether you're an initiate of such dark secrets as Italy's magnificent newcomer, Amedei, or mired in the outer darkness of Hershey's and the grossly overrated Godiva, you will find your mouth watering with the very first chapter. Rosenblum throws himself into his subject and takes the reader with him on extraordinary journeys: to Oxaca, Mexico, to plumb the secrets of mole sauce (which is traditionally for turkey, not chicken, and is supposed to be made in platoon-feeding quantities. To Sao Tome and Principe, two islands so far out that Fernando Po (what?) is a near neighbor, where a mildly unhinged Italian is planning to rebuild a tradition of fine chocolate. To West Africa, where cacao growers who suffer from thieving governments and armed rebels took another blow when a half-witted BBC report accused them of using slave labor. To Belgium and Switzerland which, reputation to the contrary, produce mostly mass-market chocolate on an industrial scale. To England where (as usual) what they eat will scare your pants off. To the U.S., where we get the lowdown on Hershey and Mars but get good news, too, about Steve DeVries in Denver and Scharffen Berger in California: Both are moving steadily in the direction of the French. And they are not alone: Vere (pronounced 'vair-ray') just opened in New York City, offering fine chocolate made exclusively from rare a Ecuadorian variety. And of course Rosenblum takes us to France--all of chocolate-making France, not just Paris. France is where, Rosenblum says, chocolate reaches transcendence. Not only chocolate--the basic stuff of the plain, unadorned chocolate bar--but chocolates (note the plural), which are filled and frilled and decorated and molded. In short, they are confections or candies. Rosenblum takes us into the workshops and passions of chocolatiers who are as devoted and creative as any Michelin 3-star chefs. And just as independent and secretive. These artists would have fit right in at the Sun King's Versailles. There's other stuff here, and it's all good, rich, satisfying stuff: chocolate and health, chocolate 'addiction,' chocolate as an aphrodisiac, and the great enemy of chocolate-lovers everywhere: the cosmetics industry, which is buying up cocoa butter as fast as it can so women can smear it on their faces! As outrages go, that's surely among the worst, just as this book is surely among the best.--Bill Marsano is an award-winning writer and editor in New York. His T-shirt reads 'Just give me the chocolate and no one gets hurt.'

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 27, 2013

    To whoever came in order to rp....

    Previous result...

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 27, 2013

    Autumnfire

    A mate would be nice *she walks to her cave*

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 27, 2013

    Sunwing to Coldclaw

    Yes, but i gtgtb. Basically, i wanted to reward you for fighting, so leave up a post that i can see tomorrow about what you would like. Ciao!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 2, 2012

    Raptorstar's Den

    The leaders den is a small cavern on the side of the mesa. A curtain of lichen is covering the enterance. Inside there is a small nest made of lambs ear and moss.

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