The Chocolate World Expo, hosted by Marvin Baum took place at the Meadowlands Expo Center this past Sunday, March 5th. I believe this event was targeted for chocoholics as well as families with small children. The expo had more than 30 vendors such as Whole Foods Market, Dove Chocolate, and Edible Arrangements to name a few.
As I walked into the expo, I smelled divine aromas of freshly baked chocolate chip cookies and seen tables of chocolate fountains where you could dip almost anything under. As I approached the fountain, I picked up a soft marshmallow to dip into the creamy, rich milk chocolate fountain. It left my marshmallow dripping and then together it was a gooey yet satisfying treat to start.
I then visited the Saratoga Peanut Butter Co. stand, where they offered specialty-flavored organic peanut butters. I first tried The Blizzard that was blended with white chocolate. The smooth, subtle flavors of white chocolate mellowed out the strong, toasty flavors of peanuts. I went “bananas” for Monkey Boy, which had raisins and banana essence blended in. I would recommend this as a healthy lunch bag snack paired with pretzels or Granny Smith apples.
As I continued the smell of freshly, baked Belgian waffles pulled my attention to Screme Gelato Bar. They were offering different chocolate gelato samples with the waffles a la mode. The Chocolate Whiskey Brownie [made with Johnnie Walker Black] was cool and creamy but a left warm sensation on my palate. The Chocolate Chili had a smooth delivery but also left a spicy, lingering finish.
Whole Foods Market did a cupcake decorating demo that excited many of the children watching. They also gave out small moist pieces of cake to satisfy their hunger.
I was very surprised to see vendors like Pickle Licisous and Gogo’s Garlic Dip (aka Samios Foods) at an event like this. Although I am fans of both and they individually tasted great, it just didn’t pair well with chocolate or with my stomach.
Towards the end of the chocolate expo, I saw Hell’s Kitchen Contestant, Robert Hesse at his own booth, who was booked as “entertainment”. As I approached the booth, I thought about asking him maybe two questions but instead without giving me any eye-contact or greeting, he began to give me his autograph and asked for my name very arrogantly. I refused his autograph, dropped it and continued on. He was very arrogant as he if he may have WON the show. It goes to show that his bad attitude was certainly bad for business. I guess Gordon Ramsey does have a good judge of character after all.
I decided to not let that bad episode ruin the whole show. The last vendor offered me a sample of Adult Chocolate Milk, which was very rich in flavor with a 40-Proof kick at the bottom of the glass. It provided a past childhood memory with a present “grown-up” reality.
Overall, this Chocolate World Expo can be described as tasting dark chocolate. The beginning was mildly sweet [Chocolate Fountains], rich in flavor [Screme Gelato Bar], and sometimes leaves a bitter lingering finish [HK Robert Hesse].