Sep 24, 2017 Last Updated 9:52 PM, Aug 24, 2017

Every issue, we dedicate our Hot Chocolate section to give our readers a peek at what's hot and new in the world of chocolate.

The Chocolate Alchemist

The Chocolate Alchemist

Robert Campbell (aka ‘The Chocolate Alchemist’) and his inspired drinking chocolates were featured in the February 2011 issue of Dessert Professional. Now he is making chocolate in his glass enclosed, temperature controlled choco-studio located in the Venezuelan restaurant Sazon that he co-owns with his wife (and chef) Judith. The Chocolate Alchemist bars are crafted from fine cacao sourced from plantations in Ecuador, Peru, and the Dominican Republic. Robert sweetens his bars with coconut sugar, unrefined dark brown sugar, and local maple syrup. Coincidentally, Sazon is located on the same block as Milton Hershey’s first store in Philadelphia, PA. For wholesale and retail information, visit

Dandelion Japan

Dandelion Chocolate Japan

More than 200 people waited for hours in the blustery cold winds in the Kuramae neighborhood of Tokyo to buy chocolate treats at the opening of San Francisco, CA-based Dandelion Chocolate’s new store in Japan. In true Japanese style, the Dandelion team welcomed their patient patrons by supplying hot tea and hand warmers to them. “This is our first expansion outside of San Francisco, and we couldn’t think of a better place to call our next home. Just like our flagship store in California, our Japanese location will soon be making its single origin chocolate in-house. In the meantime, we are sending bars from San Francisco until their production is fully up and running,” explains Dandelion founder and CEO Todd Masonis. “Japan has a culture of craftsmanship that we appreciate, and it’s the perfect fit for our brand. We were very fortunate to partner with our friend, Seiji Horibuchi,” adds Masonis. Horibuchi is the CEO of Dandelion Chocolate Japan, and is known for being a cultural evangelist between Japan and the United States. “I fell in love immediately when I entered Dandelion’s San Fransisco store, and intended to bring the same concept and spirit of Dandelion Chocolate to Tokyo, and I think we have succeeded,” says Horibuchi.

New Choc Show

The Big Chocolate Show

The Big Chocolate Show is coming to NYC (October 7-9, 2016). Produced by The Big Events Group of Brooklyn, NY, the show will be a celebration of fine chocolate featuring demos, lectures and more than 80 vetted choco-exhibitors. The three-day event will include a trade-only day followed by a weekend of choc-festivities open to the public. For more information about exhibiting and attending The Big Chocolate Show, visit

Gotham Chocolates

Gotham Chocolates

After four years as Executive Pastry Chef at NYC’s storied Gotham Bar and Grill, Ron Paprocki (one of DP’s Top Ten Pastry Chefs in 2011) has launched a line of chocolate appropriately named Gotham Chocolates. His chocolate studio is a 28-square-foot corner in the Gotham Bar and Grill kitchen where he painstakingly crafts his bonbons and new line of chocolate bars (including the Independent bar, made from a proprietary blend of foraged Bolivian and Ecuadorian cacaos). Gotham Chocolates are available for sale at the restaurant and on-line.

Big Island Chocolate Festival

Big Island Chocolate Festival

With the theme, “Lavalicious: A Chocolate Salute to the 100th Birthday of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park,” the fifth annual Big Island Chocolate Festival will be held May 13-14 with events headquartered from the Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel on the Big Island of Hawaii. The two-day chocolate extravaganza includes a cacao plantation tour at Original Hawaiian Chocolate Factory, a college culinary competition and several public foodie and agriculture-themed seminars. This year’s event celebrates the 100th birthday of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, and culinary booths will be judged on how they best depict the event theme that could include Kilauea and Mauna Loa volcanoes, Hawaiian culture and the park’s native plants and animals. Presented by the Kona Cacao Association (KCA), event proceeds benefit the ACF Kona Kohala Chefs Assn/University of Hawai‘i endowment fund for the culinary program at Hawai‘i Community College-Palamanui and programs at Kona Pacific Public Charter School in Kealakekua. The Big Island Chocolate Festival is presented by the Kona Cacao Association, Inc. The mission and goal of KCA is to promote the cacao industry on the Big Island of Hawai‘i by presenting BICF as an educational and outreach opportunity for local cacao farmers, the hospitality industry and cacao enthusiasts. For information, visit


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