FOR a fifth year running, Melbourne’s Chocolate Rush Festival is offering a tasting platter of experiences, giving both chocoholic and chocolatier alike the chance to mix and mingle over mouthfuls of the delectable melt-in-your-mouth treats.
Festival Director Simone Gordon is hoping this year’s festival will prove as successful as last year’s.
“We have had a great reception so far, and last year we had 8000 people over the two days so we are hoping that we can at least match it this year,” Ms Gordon said.
Ms Gordon started the festival in 2007, as she believed it was exactly what Melbourne needed.
“Nobody was doing anything like it, so I took a mortgage on my house and went for it,” she said.
The main attraction being of course the opportunity to eat chocolate all weekend, the Chocolate Market will be open for the duration of the festival, where you can sample, buy, and sample some more.
However, for Ms Gordon, the festival is about more than just eating.
“We want people to come along and experience all the different variety of chocolate and to pay attention to how incredible our chocolatiers are in their artforms,” she said.
On offer this year is a gourmet dinner cruise with a chocolate-themed menu. The four-course meal, including local wines, was dreamt up by chefs Matt Wilkinson, Nicholas Peolaert and Pierrick Boyer – and seats have been selling fast.
“The boys were more than happy to create an elaborate and amazing menu. We have some talented, amazing, incredibly skilled professionals on board this year,” Ms Gordon said.
Other festival attractions are just as tempting – learn all about chocolate and the cocoa bean like a professional, and the chance to witness the Australian Chocolate Championships as teams prepare a grand centrepiece to compete for the title.
You can also watch some of Australia’s finest chocolate experts as they prepare their favourite recipes, before indulging in chocolate-themed cinema at Choc Fest.
There’s something for the kiddies too, with workshops on cupcake decoration, and the making of chocolate balls and chocolate lollipops.
The Chocolate rush Chocolate Festival 2011 is on August 13 and 14 at Shed 4, Open Channel, Victoria Harbour, North Wharf Rd, Docklands. Tickets on sale at event tix or phone 1300 737 363.