Of Chocolate Exhibits There is No End: Part 2
Just as the Detroit Institute of Arts closes its wonderful Bitter|Sweet display of chocolate, coffee and tea, no need to despair. New York offers three additional exhibits. Setting aside the wondrous and elegant chocolate shops, at least three local museums currently exhibit artifacts related to the history and consumption of chocolate. For now, the new Jacques Torres Chocolate Museum will have to wait. However, we did manage to visit two this past weekend: “A Taste for Chocolate” at the Morris-Jumel Mansion and chocolate sculptures produced by cocoa workers in the Congo called “Cercle d’Art des Travailleurs de Plantation Congolaise” at the SculptureCenter in Long Island City. The sculptures will be post (3) and Jacques Torres’ Chocolate Museum, post (4) in this series. Clearly there is no end.
Not only does Morris-Jumel Mansion run an annual day long chocolate festival, which certainly deserves a visit, it is also the oldest existing house in Manhattan, located in Harlem’s Sugar Hill. British born Colonel Roger Morris and his American wife, Mary Philipse, developed their summer villa on 130 acres on the second highest spot on the island in 1765. During the Revolution, George Washington headquartered there in the fall of 1776 for a few weeks. Morris and the next permanent resident, Stephen Jumel, were traders and dry goods salesman, engaged in the day’s chocolate business, among other things. At one point Aaron Burr lived there during his short marriage to Eliza Jumel, Stephen’s widow. The charming vicinity at Mount Morris has been maintained to look as it did in the late 1800s.
The brochure for “A Taste for Chocolate” envisions Mary Morris and Eliza Jumel breakfasting on chocolate and reproduces a June 30, 1810 bill of lading belonging to Stephen Jumel for cargo including 265 cacao bags.
Three items stood out in the show:
A delicate and handy chocolate traveling set from the Bruce Museum, dated 1845, from the Sévres Porcelain. The appurtenances fit into their slots as bonbons in a chocolate sampler.
Two elegant American porcelain dishes from 1984 decorated with cocoa pods.
This vibrant painting of a cocoa tree by Mike McMath, 2017, captures the natural beauty of our chocolate’s start.
Look around and then partake in some of the unusual chocolate products sold in the gift shop.
Launching The Chocolate Babka Project
Admittedly, by heritage I am more a German kugelhopf than an Eastern European babka. I remember eating homemade kugelhopf and bundt cake at family celebrations in Los Angeles. When I mentioned babka to my German speaking father, he looked puzzled and asked, “What’s a babka?” Babka, much less chocolate babka, was just not in our pastryRead more ›
On the Chocolate Trail in Belize’s Jungle
Mark and I happily signed on for three distinct rainforest chocolate experiences within a 15 mile radius of our home base, the romantic Cotton Tree eco-lodge which is nestled among Mayan villages near the Caribbean in the Toledo District of Belize. Not only did Belize envelop us in an exotic rainforest experience, our tourism contributedRead more ›
Is that coffee or chocolate?
Having just eaten my daily portion of chocolate covered coffee beans, I am primed to consider the questions I hear about coffee when I teach on the chocolate trail. How do the two foods really differ, other than taste? I think back to when the layout for On the Chocolate Trail was being designed andRead more ›
A Chocolate Cake for October’s Tricks: Devil’s Food
Heading into October and its culmination in Halloween, I find myself hankering for Devil’s Food Cake, despite its initially derogatory name. Supposedly in 1690 Pilgrims traveled to Plymouth Rock via Amsterdam. They stayed in a house near the city’s biggest chocolate houses and called that chocolate “the Devil’s food.” Later, a chocolate cake, perhaps simplyRead more ›
Some Previous Posts
(in alphabetical order)
- A Chocolate Cake for October's Tricks: Devil's Food
- Announcing Second Edition: On the Chocolate Trail
- Book Optioned: Museum Exhibit
- Celebrating Ice Cream Month with Chocolate
- Choco-Travel Tips
- Chocolate Exhibit Hits the New York Times
- Chocolate Trail Broadens: "Semi[te] Sweet: On Jews and Chocolate" Travels
- Chocolate, Coffee, Tea and Me
- How About Some Mindful Chocolate Tasting?
- Jews on the Chocolate Trail
- Lunch & Learn: Central Synagogue
- Lunch and Learn: Tasting the Best Chocolate
- Mothers and Survival by Chocolate
- No End to Chocolate Exhibits Part III: Visits #3, 4 & 5
- Of Chocolate Exhibits There is No End: Part 2
- Super Food Chocolate for Super Bowl Sunday: Three Recipes
- Talking Chocolate in February
- Warm Up: 3 Historical Drinking Chocolate Recipes