Chocolate: The Exhibition is the Natural History Museum Of Utah’s latest addition to an already mesmerizing attraction. The exhibit focuses on the world’s enduring love affair with this sweetest of treats and promises to “engage your senses and reveal aspects of this sumptuous sweet that you’ve never thought about before. You’ll explore the plant, the products, and the culture of chocolate through the lenses of science, history, and popular culture”.
The exhibit takes guests on a detailed journey through chocolate’s history and its geographical explosion. Visitors start by exploring the home of chocolate – the tropical rainforests – before following chocolate’s growth through Mayan and Aztec cultures and onto Europe. The experience then looks at the effects of the industrial revolution before culminating by examining chocolate in the modern world.
After exploring chocolate’s storied past, visitors get to sample the real thing for an extra $1. The exhibit’s Chocolate Tastings provide a fun way to learn hands on about the process of making chocolate and discover Utah’s amazing chocolate scene. Chocolate tastings are held:
Every Wednesday at 7 pm
Every Saturday at 12 pm, 1 pm, 2 pm, 3 pm, 4 pm
Every Sunday at 1 pm, 2 pm, 3 pm
If that wasn’t enough – guests who time their visits just right can learn even more from local experts. The museum runs 15 minute mini-lectures known as ‘Chocolate Blasts’. These quarter hour talks are followed by Q&A on a variety of diverse topics such as: the history of chocolate, the process of making chocolate, current archeological research focusing on chocolate residue on Fremont pottery, and Utah’s amazing chocolate scene. Some of the upcoming blasts include:
Chocolate Blast with Lisa Thompson
February 28, 2014 – 1:30pm
In 2013, archaeologists announced the discovery of the oldest evidence of cacao in the U.S. on Ancestral Puebloan pottery from a site near Blanding, Utah. Join Lisa Thompson for an exploration of the science behind the new study and the questions it raises about the relationship between the American Southwest and Mesoamerica.
Chocolate Blast with Ruth Kendrick
March 1, 2014 – 1:30pm
Join local chocolatier, Ruth Kendrick from Chocolot Artisan Confections to learn the secretes behind working with chocolate in your kitchen. Discover the best place to store chocolate, how to melt and temper chocolate, and how to make the world’s best chocolate dipped strawberries.
Chocolate Blast with Art Pollard
March 1, 2014 – 3:30pm
March 8, 2014 – 1:30pm
Join award-winning Amano chocolate maker, Art Pollard, to discover what it’s like to work side-by-side with the cacao growers and some of the world’s top pastry chefs. Hear Art’s unique perspective on chocolate, where the chocolate world is heading, and what it is like on the cacao plantations where all of our chocolate begins.
Chocolate Blast with Topher Webb
March 8, 2014 – 3:30pm
Long before chocolate was made in bar-form, it was consumed as a drink infused with indigenous herbs, florals, and chiles. Join Topher Webb, owner of Mezzo Chocolates, to hear the story of chocolate in Pre-Columbian, Mesoamerica and discover a new chocolate-based culinary movement that seeks to escape the confines of European chocolate traditions.
Chocolate Blast with Glenna Nielsen – Grimm
March 14, 2014 – 1:30pm
In 2013, archaeologists announced the discovery of the oldest evidence of cacao in the U.S. on Ancestral Puebloan pottery from a site near Blanding, Utah. Join NHMU archeologist Glenna Nielsen-Grimm for an exploration of the science behind the new study and the questions it raises about the relationship between the American So uthwest and Mesoamerica.
Blast’s continue until May 25th and more details can be found here: http://nhmu.utah.edu/programs/chocolate-blasts. The exhibit itself runs until June 1st.