Monday, July 1, 2013

Chocolate exhibition by BlackForest Chocolates @ OOTB

Chocolatier Shilpi Chawla with friend
As India's only chocolate blogger, I often wistfully read about the many chocolate exhibitions and events that take place abroad. India is woefully lacking in all matters chocolate and there are few, if any, events centering around this divine food. So when my friend, Nikhil, told me that there was going to be a 'chocolate exhibition' at Out of the Blue, Powai, I was more than excited. The exhibition was set up by BlackForest Chocolates, a Mumbai-based brand by chocolatier, Shilpi Chawla.

Amidst the Sunday brunch crowd and some lovely live music, Shilpi and her friend Christina sat at their one-stall exhibition in the main hall of Out of the Blue, Powai. Though I had expected an exhibition on a larger scale, the varieties I saw and tasted more than made up for it.

Shilpi Chawla, who is the chocolatier and owner of BlackForest Chocolates had many a variety laid out for display, sampling and sale. An inviting thali-ful of chocolates encouraged visitors to try them out and buy some if they fancied them. 

I, of course, tried every single variety and was impressed by their quality. What I liked most was her sugar-free chocolate blended with fresh apples and cinnamon. The fruit and spice lent their natural sweetness to the product, which had no other sugar substitutes. Though I'm unsure of the shelf life of such a product that uses fresh fruit, I loved the concept. These were so much better than the sugar-free varieties that one gets in the market.

The stall had other enticingly packaged chocolates like Mawa Paan chocolate, White Chocolate Chikki, Blue Berry Chocolate and an innovative one called Chocolate Roti. I bought a few of each to try at leisure and review later. BlackForest Chocolates makes many other varieties of chocolate, which you can check out on their website.

The stall also showcased some beautiful packaging that Chawla sells her chocolates in. You could pick up gold or silver boxes wrapped in ribbons, or paper bags with cheerful multi-coloured stripes or even delicate organza potlis for a traditional touch.

The exhibition was initially slated only for the brunch slot between 11 am and 4 pm, but was later extended to the evening slot between 7 pm and 10 pm. The exhibition received a good response, with the enthusiasm picking up towards the evening.

Chocosophy had fun visiting the exhibition and hopes there will be many more such in India.

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