Wednesday - February 16, 2005
Studies have discovered that chocolate contains theobromine, caffeine, phenylethylamine and anandamide — all chemicals that affect the brain. Theobromine and caffeine are stimulants, and phenylethylamine and anandamide combine with brain chemicals to produce mild feelings of pleasure causing, in some cases, an antidepressant effect. Little wonder that chocolate can be a serious addiction. Real chocoholics crave chocolate in the same way that an alcoholic craves a drink — and the higher the fat and darker the color the better.
I try to stay away from it as much as possible, to tell the truth. I figure I have enough temptations in my life, between great wine and a love of experimenting with new food I would lose control if I allowed chocolate into the equation.
But when I do indulge I make sure that I pick some of the best there is to offer. Chocolate lovers should head to the Outrigger Keauhou Beach Resort Feb. 26 where the fourth annual Kona Chocolate Festival promises to be a spectacular event.
I love the Keauhou Beach Resort. It’s a little bit of old Hawaii, and any event I’ve attended there has always been special. This one sounds fabulous.
It begins with a champagne chocolate and live music reception on the grounds of the hotel, right by the beach and under the stars. Big Island chefs will join ice cream and candy makers to present some stunning creations. There’s chocolate tasting, a Belgian chocolate warm fondue fountain, locally grown chocolate tasting by the Original Hawaiian Chocolate factory, chocolate body painting, and there’s even the chance to attend a chocolate symposium presented by John Scharffenberger of the world-famous Scharffenberger Chocolate Company.
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