Saturday, February 16, 2013

A Very Chocolate Weekend

There always seems to be some kind of party going on here.

I like it.

This weekend is the "Cioccolato Vero a Modena." Basically a weekend filled with chocolate. Basically a bit of heaven for me.

In the Piazza Grande, about a dozen different vendors had stands set up. All had chocolatiers showing off their stuff.

This one had chocolate animals.

Every stand had hot chocolate. White, milk, and dark.


Chocolate salami!

Chocolate fettuccine.

Chocolate purses and high heels.

Horse shoes! And some hammers.

 Chocolate with farro!

Hahahahahaha. A $3 brownie.

So many Sacher tortes.

I'm going to see Melissa and Brad tomorrow! Melissa loves turtles so I got her a chocolate one.

I dunno what Brad likes so I got him two tiny sheep.

In the center of the Piazza they had a little information tent, which included this giant chocolate-churning thing.

It also had a bunch of chocolate history on posters hanging around the tent.

This sign tells one of the legends surrounding chocolate. Apparently, there was an Aztec princess left to guard a great treasure by her husband who left to go to war. When the enemies arrived, she refused to give up the secret location of the treasure and they killed her. From her blood was born the cacao plant.

I wonder if my blood would give birth to some kind of dessert...

Here's what I bought, after much thought (seriously though, it took me about 45 minutes to decide what to buy after observing each stand).

Chocolate salami and white chocolate that looks like cheese.

Mmmmmm chocolate and hazelnuts (per usual).

Chocolate with balsamic filling. Classic Modena.

Coconut chocolates.

A mini Sacher torte.

I've never had one before. My favorite part was definitely the ganache topping.

And finally, some chocolate liquor for good measure.

A visit to the acetaia, where they make balsamic vinegar, was part of the days festivities.

This guy talked all about making aceto balsamico. I could understand most of what was happening if I tried really hard to pay attention. Unfortunately, my natural reaction is to zone out because it takes so much brain power for me to decipher everything. What can I say? I'm lazy.

Here are the barrels. The vinegar travels from barrel to barrel over time until some of it evaporates so that the barrel is only half full. That's how it gets so thick over time. The guy made a joke that if you left it long enough it would become like marmalade. He didn't seem to think it would taste very good, but it sounded fabulous to me!

And we all got a taste of some 10 year balsamic.

My favorite thing that I learned is that no two bottles of balsamic are alike. How cool.


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