Festival of Chocolate Coming to Betty Ehart Senior Center Saturday

The Festival of Chocolate formally launches the weeklong event called, Festival of Trees. This year more than 50 items are available for silent auction. Those attending the Festival of Chocolate get the first glance at the many offerings.Courtesy photo

By Bernadette Lauritzen

The Los Alamos Retired and Senior Organization (LARSO) and Champions of Youth Ambitions (C’YA) will host the eighth annual Festival of Chocolate at the Betty Ehart Senior Center.

The Los Alamos MainStreet sponsored event will take place from 7-9 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 10. Tickets are $20.

“The Festival of Chocolate has become a showcase for many of our community’s chefs,” said Pauline Powell Schneider, LARSO Director, “to play with chocolate in amazing ways.”

Many chefs will participate including the CoffeeHouse Cafe, the Hilltop House Hotel, Aspen Ridge Lodge, Los Alamos Medical Center and chefs Michael Mason and Fred Ortiz of the BESC.

A new addition for 2012 is Chef Levi Guarello from the Dixie Girl Restaurant. Chef Guarello will be making the fabulous Chocolate Pots de Crème … made with 76 percent Ecuadoran Cacoa and topped with white chocolate cream made with French Callebaut White Chocolate.

“We are always happy to support a great cause, and supply the world with more chocolate,” Dixie Girl owner Denise Lane said.

Guarello’s Hill Diner counterpart, Daniel Escarcega, will be making their ever popular Texas Chocolate Funeral Cake.

“The story of that cake is it is the cake of choice to be made and taken to wakes and funerals by the little old church ladies in the Texas Hill Country,” Lane said. “It’s a classic buttermilk chocolate cake topped with a super rich buttermilk chocolate frosting filled with walnuts … to die for!”

The admission to the Festival of Chocolate allows patrons to eat and drink to their heart’s content. Those wanting to take home some luscious leftovers, can make a small donation to purchase a take home container.

“When people come, it will be a visual feast as well as a taste sensation! Every year, attendees are delighted with the spread,” Powell Schneider said.

The entertainment for the evening is sponsored by the Friends of the Senior Center and features, My Blue Heaven.

“They will make your feet dance and all the sparkling trees will no doubt elicit many ‘ooohs and ahhhhs,’” Powell Schneider said.

The Festival of Chocolate is the formal launch to a week-long event called the Festival of Trees.

Desserts also include chocolate beignets (French doughnuts) from Morning Glory Bakery, chocolate cookies from Schwan’s Home Delivery, chocolate pumpkin cake from Chef Deb Jaus at LAMC, and chocolate puff filled pasrty from Chef Craig Costley at the Aspen Ridge Lodge.

The funds raised will be used by both programs to benefit transportation and education for seniors and youth.

To reserve tickets for the Festival of Chocolate, call 662-8920.

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