Saturday, March 17, 2007

it's spring, a small bit of ballard PLUS theo chocolate factory tour!!

guess what, chicken dumplings? i woke up yesterday and it was spring! in fact, there was more spring than you could shake a stick at! take a look for yourself!

friday, leff, s, a and i went on a tour of the theo chocolate factory! eeeep!!!

leff and i met up with the guys in ballard but before we all piled into a's car and went on our merry way to freemont (where theo is located), leff and i split a st. patty's babycake at royale

and did a little shopping at the scandinavian gift shop (bwha-haaa!!! farmer's hat!!!)

and mcphee where i got this skull ring.

anyway, theo chocolates is AWESOME!!! not only are they the 11th largest chocolate maker in the u.s. but they're also very liberal with their free samples!

here's the factory floor where all of the chocolatey magic happens.

these are some chocolate nibs that we were able to sample.

i think that they're from the process before the beans are roasted. either way, the nibs are really high in antioxidants and have a lovely, vaguely olive flavor.

mmmm! shiny, shiny holding tanks!

and the machine where the sugar is added into the large chocolate mass. in this section, the mixture is a solid. the sugar and chocolate extracts are pressed through rollers to make a chocolate "ribbon".

employees in the enroping and tempering room!! (yes, we all had to wear hairnets.)

the tour takes about an hour, costs $5 (u.s.d.) and, like i said earlier, theo is *very* liberal with their samples. tours are daily at 1 and 3 with an additional 11 am tour on saturdays. (call ahead for reservations)

seriously, seattlites, CALL AHEAD FOR RESERVATIONS!! you'll want to take family and friends from out of town on the tour. (oh, leff has a more in depth review on his esculents blog.)

anyway, we were still hopped up on the sugar (i cannot TELL you how much i love their coconut curry milk chocolate bar! i think that i ate a whole plate of samples.) so we walked along the waterfront near where getty's and adobe's offices are located.

there was a fake woodgrain sticker.

i was impressed.

so, yeah, friday was awesome!! today, of course, is st. patrick's! so it's time to drink green beer (er, not really. i might have a guiness though.) and watch the parade. and then maybe have some more beer.

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