Last year, Seoul held its first annual Salon du Chocolat at CoEx Mall. Salon du Chocolat is a yearly trade fair for the international chocolate industry that began in Paris in 1994. Since that time it has spread to several countries all over the world, now including South Korea! What better way to bring people of all walks of life together, than through the deliciousness of chocolate?
Once in the exhibit hall, my attention was immediately directed to a display of lovely and imaginative sculptures made entirely of chocolate. They looked to good to ever eat, but once I got close enough the aroma became far to temping. My favorite one had a very intricately designed crane surrounded with boxes, hearts and tiny heart shaped keys. It was a lovely combination of food and art.
Most of the exhibition hall was occupied by chocolatiers from all over the world, showcasing and selling their goods. Some chocolatiers were even selling chocolates that they were making freshly at their booths. It was really cool to see them sculpting little masterpieces right before my eyes. Many booths were also giving out samples, so it was lots of fun going around and sampling the different types of chocolate. Unfortunately, where there are free samples… there are sure to be long lines or large crowds, so fellow samplers beware. One of the most interesting chocolates I sampled was called Al Nassma from Arabia and it was made with camel milk. It really had an interesting rich taste.
Other than booth hopping and chocolate sampling, there were stages for culinary performances and cooking demonstrations. They even had a fashion show where all the models wore clothes constructed from chocolate. I didn’t get a chance to see it last year, but I did get to see some of the outfits on display. It was hard to believe you could make clothes like that out of chocolate, they seemed so fragile I can’t imagine it being easy to put one on, let alone walk in it. In addition, there was a booth that sold hand made jewelry that was shaped into different types of desserts. My boyfriend bought me the cutest pink macaroon bracelet.
Overall it was a really great experience! Of course you can’t walk away from such a decadent affair without acquiring a few souvenirs. So, I bought some chocolates and macaroons from a Korean chocolatier called J. Brown. Their chocolates are some of the smoothest and creamiest I’ve ever tasted and their macaroons are filled with different flavors of chocolate. I also got these really cute chocolate pops that were hand made right at the convention. It wasn’t a huge haul, but it was enough to satisfy my chocolatey needs.
If you’re interested in checking out Seoul’s 2nd annual Salon du Chocolat, it will be held once more this year at CoEx Mall. The dates are set for January 16th (Thurs) – 19th (Sun). If you can I would recommend buying your tickets ahead of time on Interpark just to save you the time of waiting in line, but if you can’t you can always buy them at the door. You can get more information about the times and program schedule HERE. Happy Eating!