Monday, March 25, 2013

Big Island Chocolate Festival 2013

The Big Island Chocolate Festival was a chocoholic fantasy dream come true at the Fairmont Orchid in Hawaii. This three day celebration of everything centering around chocolate included chocolate demonstrations, chocolate farm tours, chocolate competions and of course an ample opportunity to see and savor chocolate at its best.

Student participation from the culinary schools around Hawaii brought out the best in group collaborations and imaginative creations. The attention to detail and focused concentration of the students to make nothing but the best shows the anticipation and excitement to the culinary events.
Ah, it was so hard to just pick one as a favorite dessert or savory presentation an the gala night presentation. Chocolate preparations were all on display from chocolate confectioners, bean to bar creators, chefs and chocolatiers were all putting on an amazing show.

Fortunately, a judging panel chose sweet and savory winners with the culinary team at the Fairmont Orchid receiving both sweet and savory award. They also won the people's choice award for the delicious sample below,cocoa dusted spicy ahi cone with truffle orange vinagrette and chocolate nibs.

Here's a sample of other sweet and savory dishes and chocolate inspirations from the gala evening event.

You get a delicous bite with this chocolate infused Kau pork belly from the Hilton Waikoloa, made with 72% Waialua chocolate from Oahu, pickled daikon and carrots and chile cilantro in a chocolate char siu sauce


Executive chef Donald Wressel from Guittard chocolate was busy working on a floral chocolate fantasy masterpiece. It was amazing, but I'm wondering who got away with this forty pounder at the end of the event, wish I had a big enough bag to haul this puppy away!

The beautiful floral details to this chocolate sculpture.


A very odd and yet delicious mixture of sensations presented was the Big Island Hog Balls made with all local ingredients including nice big chunks of Hawaiian bacon, I think I polished off a good third of this platter alone!

The sold out event at the Fairmont Orchid was truly a chocolate connoisseur's tasting experience, and it also raised funding for equipment at a local Hawaiian culinary school and a community amphitheature at a charter school at Kaleakekua.

Its always great to support and sample locally made ingredients and finished products like Hawaiian grown chocolate and the Kona chocolate association and their supporters are making great efforts to promoting Hawaiian products and events so that more people can appreciate these products.

To see more images of the three day event, please visit my flickr page.



  1. Wow, Noel, this looks fantastic! Look at that sculpture.
    I hate chocolate but man, this presentation would almost make me forget. Almost.
    Thanks for linking up this week.

  2. Noel, since I've been following you I think these are your best food photos to date! Again, I'm a new follower for the past two months so that is nothing against photos prior to that sir! Once again, you've set a great bar for this immensely novice photographer (me) to strive for! Stunning photos... :)

  3. I've never been to a chooclate festival and think I'd have to proceed cautiously so I didn't OD and come out feeling like crap. The creations you have featured are beautiful.

  4. This is a WOW post! All of those beautiful and creative chocolate creations have put in craving mode. I was really surprised by the chocolate infused Kau pork belly. I love chocolate and I love pork belly, but together? Willing to try!

  5. Amazing display of chocolate and then the 40 pound display just put it over the top. Thanks for sharing, it was a feast for my eyes and happily for your tummy.

  6. Well, that certainly looks like a chocolate lovers heaven!


Related Posts with Thumbnails