For the second year Chicago’s Navy Pier is the location of The Chicago Fine Chocolate & Dessert Show, a celebration of all things chocolate—and this year, dessert, to be held on Friday, October 18 to Sunday, October 20. From the finest hand-painted artisan bars and uniquely-flavored truffles to decadent chocolate cakes, tarts, mousses, and more, guests will experience the world of chocolate. Over 14,500 attendees attended last year’s show over three days. Tickets are available for $25. To purchase tickets, please visit here.
In addition to returning feature areas including the popular French Pastry School’s Demonstration Stage and Chocolate Art Gallery, The Chicago Fine Chocolate & Dessert Show will also feature new attractions such as: a live cupcake competition amongst amateur bakers, a Cake and Pastry Art Gallery, presented by Cake Deco Magazine, showcasing stunning edible art from master bakers and cake decorators, a demonstration from former Top Chef Just Desserts competitor Chef Malika Ameen, as well as a 1,000 pound chocolate life-size replica of the iconic Chicago Blues Brother with saxophone in tow, created by international pastry chef and holder of three Guinness World Records,Alain Roby.
Founder Mario Pi explains his expanded vision for Chicago Fine Chocolate & Dessert Show. “We received such a great response from artisan chocolatiers who needed a platform to showcase their products last year,” says Pi. “This year, we wanted to recognize the pastry professionals who’ve also mastered chocolate as a medium. We’re thrilled to have top national talent like Chef Alain Roby and Chef Malika Ameen working alongside us to highlight not only fine chocolate, but the multitude of ways that it can be creatively used in pastries and desserts.”
Other feature areas will include: the Beer, Wine, and Spirits Pairings Pavilion highlighting fine chocolate’s various beverage pairings; Restaurant Row offering bites filled with local culinary flavors; seminars presented by Dessert Professional Magazinefeaturinginteractive, educational experiences. Pastry Chicago will hold their Cupcake Competition at the show,pitting amateur bakers against one another as they create the most delicious and creative cupcakes for expert judges’ and attendees’ approval.
Attendees will be able to purchase chocolate from well-known brands like Dove Chocolate Discoveries and Hershey’s alongside artistic, hand-painted creations from microbatch artisan chocolatier Flying Noir and award-winning local talent Mayana Chocolate. Beyond chocolate, the show represents the dessert industry’s ample offerings with confections like homemade toffee from T’s Toffee, high-end European-style baked goods from Oak Mill Bakery, and every cake, cupcake, brittle, and brownie imaginable.
Aspiring chocolatiers and pastry chefs will also find a number of exhibitors to update their kitchens and tools, with Truffly Made showcasing easy-to-use molds for creating the perfect chocolates and truffles and Gunter Wilhelm Cutlery offering professional cutlery and cookware for at-home chefs.
Photos: Courstesy of Chicago Fine Chocolate & Dessert Show