Cooking Chocolate in Paris

Fearrington is now starting to change gears for Spring, a few days of nice weather makes for a busy village, and I’ve taken my last trip away from The Fearrington House kitchen for a while.

I recently returned home from a trip where it took a plane, train and car to get me to a small town outside Paris called “Tain L’Hermitage.” This new town is where I went back to school for a bit. This was a great school, where everyone would like to go to, where I learned about chocolate.

The theme for my class was pretty much “take everything you have ever been taught about chocolate and file it in the ‘rubbish bin.'” The school was held by Valhrona and showed me a whole new world of ideas and techniques. They have such a different approach to chocolate. When I was about to throw away a creation and start again, the chef saw it and decided to have a class discussion about it. What a great way to learn!

He said, “This is perfect. It is the beginning of being on the right path to a great product.” That is how much (or little) I knew! This learning experience is the first step to an upcoming overhaul of the desserts we produce at Fearrington, and is the first step in a new chocolate program. We will launch this program soon and it will impact the entire Village, from the inn rooms to The Goat.

Be on the lookout for chocolate truffle “bonbons,” a distinctive bottom to all of our chocolate creations, and there might even be a “Beltie chocolate bar” in there somewhere. So come by the Village Center and see what new products are being introduced!

– Executive Chef Colin Bedford