The Big Island Chocolate Festival is Friday, June 8 at Four Seasons Resort Hualalai. Executive Chef James Babian and Pastry Chef Linda Rodriguez of Four Seasons are leading a selection of hand-picked pastry chefs, confectioners and chocolatiers to offer an evening of chocolate decadence and savory bites.
Also on tap are celebrity chef demonstrations and an educational cacao presentation from 10 a.m-3 p.m. above the resort’s Pahui’a oceanfront restaurant. Tours of cacao farms will be available that day in Keauhou to showcase how cacao is grown, processed and made into chocolate.
The evening gala will held from 6 p.m-10 p.m. Students from the Culinary Arts Program of the soon-to-be-built Palamanui Community College will be on hand to assist the professional chefs in making the event a culinary extravaganza. Enjoy a silent auction, gourmet savory and sweet appetizers, craft beer, wine, music by Cyril Pahinui and Salsa Latinos, plus dancing.
The gala includes a fun competition for Best Savory and Best Sweet culinary stations, which will be determined by a team of local and celebrity chefs. Attendees will vote for The People’s Choice Award.
Culinarians wishing to participate can download entry guidelines and an application on the Big Island Chocolate Festival website after March 21 or contact Farsheed Bonakdar at 808-937-4736.
Attendance to the delectable gala is limited to 400 and ticket prices are $75 per person, and include two beverage tickets, the gala event, and all the chocolate and savory delicacies you can eat. Tickets are on sale online through the web site, www.bigislandchocolatefestival.com, and are also available at the Kona Public Pacific Charter School, Kona Wine Market and Kailua Candy Company. Symposium tickets and chocolate tours are separate ticketed events from the gala.
Symposium tickets can be purchased at www.BigIslandChocolateFestival.com and more information about the “Bean to Bar” tours can be found at Original Hawaiian Chocolate Factory at www.ohcf.us.
Another opportunity to enjoy even more gourmet chocolate is with the prix fixe chocolate-themed dinner prior to the gala that Chef Jim Babian will create at Pahui‘a.
More information about reservations for this specialty dinner can be found on the event website.
The Big Island Chocolate Festival and the educational outreach it provides is supported by grants from the County of Hawaii Research and Development Department and the Hawaii Tourism Authority, Dolphin Journeys, Ozina Specialty Foods, and Guittard Chocolate Company.
The 2012 Big Island Chocolate Festival is presented by the newly formed Kona Cacao Association, Inc. The mission and goal of this association is to promote the cacao industry on the Big Island of Hawaii by presenting the BICF as an educational and outreach opportunity for local cacao farmers, the hospitality industry and cacao enthusiasts. For more information about the event please email firstname.lastname@example.org