Wellington Chocolate Factory Tour, Thank You Zomato.

Look at all those cocoa beans.

Last week I received on of those emails that makes any day better, an invitation from Zomato to attend a Wellington event. This invitation was to a tour of Wellington Chocolate Factory. I am not going to repeat the tour and tell you much information , if you are in Wellington you need to go yourself and if not, go when you visit. Even if you just pop in for a hot chocolate and have a look around, it is well worth the trip. The hot chocolate alone will blow your mind as will the chocolate scented air.

On our tour we got to hear the lovely Rochelle express her passion for what they are doing at the Wellington Chocolate Factory and why.  Wellington Chocolate Factory is about very good quality organic chocolate which has been ethically made. They support the people in the process from bean to bar. It would be very easy to sit , nod, look trendy and think – that is pretty cool. It isn’t just cool, it is amazing. To get the full picture and to fully understand their commitment, have a read of their blog –

https://thewellingtonchocolatevoyage.wordpress.com

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At the end of the tour we got to try a section of the chocolates and savour the pieces. Tasting a small piece at a time gave me chance to really taste the flavours. Different beans have different flavours depending upon their origin. I had forgotten how much I love good quality chocolate in small amounts as opposed to the off shelf cheap bars that magically vanish without a thought.

I had a great evening a loved the tour. One thing that struck me was if small producers like Wellington Chocolate Factory do not  go to that extra effort to use cocoa beans of differing varieties the world could end up with just two types of cocoa bean. Imagine just two types of wine with no variation! No thanks.

Wherever you are in the world, but ethically farmed chocolate and give the fame a chance to keep traditions alive and be paid a fair wage. Support local businesses who are going that extra mile to make a difference.

Anzac Bar.

Anzac Bar.

At the end of the evening we were given the choice of bars to take home. I came home with the not yet released Anzac Bar, keep an eye out for it, it is very good. It was a hard choice to make but I couldn’t resist going with the new bar.

Thank you Zomato and Wellington Chocolate Factory

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First Wellington Zomato dinner at the Chameleon, oh the food, company and wine was fine.

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Last night I went to the first Zomato Wellington dinner event. The dinner was held at Chameleon, the restaurant inside Wellington’s Intercontinental Hotel. You may remember that I have already had a very enjoyable meal here, thanks to Lucy from Wellington Foodies. That was the summer menu, this return meant getting to try the newly launched autumn menu.

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I walked into the hotel with a few butterflies in my tummy and was shown to where our group had gathered in the bar area. The group included several other bloggers, Geoff from the hotel, Shaun and James from Zomato and Helen from Ata Rangi wines. The evening started with a gin or vodka from the bars special syphons and a few chats about what blogging is. We started off strangers and after a wonderful meal with matching wines, ended up a very chatty group indeed. It was a lovely evening and I have spent the day today smiling. I have also told a fair few people about my meal and how they too must go and enjoy the wonderful food and beautiful space that is Chameleon.

You can read two of my news friends reviews and then you don’t have to believe just me! Dani  and Kahurangi both have lovely things to say with some more great photographs.

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The meal began with us finding our places and our personalised menus. The lovely Geoff explained about the concept of the menu and how it isn’t divided into courses, but more choices for what you would like to eat and when. We also learnt about the Martinborough Ata Rangi wine selection from Helen. It was all very interesting and listening to a small wine producer with a great passion for her job was awe inspiring. All evening much food was talked about and the conversations flowed freely for a bunch of strangers, it was great.

I will finish up now and leave you with a few pictures of the food. It was all excellent. Chameleon has defiantely kept its place on my fabulous meal out radar. In fact, it would be my number one choice for a meal out for date night, friends catch ups or any other excuse I could muster. The Ata Rangi wine was also excellent, I am not just saying that. I am not a big wine drinker but I found this a very good drop, there wasn’t one glass I didn’t like. I could taste the difference between the varieties and the quality. All round, a great night and I am very grateful to all involved.

Amuse Bouche- duck with chicory and some other fancy bits. Was a very lovely mouthful.

Amuse Bouche- Duck with chicory and some other fancy bits. Was a very lovely mouthful.

Avocado tartare, cornichons, roasted saganaki, beetroot chips and coriander juice. The cheese is similar to haloumi and from Greece.

Avocado tartare, cornichons, roasted saganaki, beetroot chips and coriander juice. The cheese is similar to haloumi and from Greece.

Kingfish gravlax, Creme fraiche, vodka, cucumber, tomato jelly, watercress. A lovely refreshing dish which was well matched with Craighall Chardonnay. I declared it all tasted like being on holiday.

Kingfish gravlax, creme fraiche, vodka, cucumber, tomato jelly, watercress. A lovely refreshing dish which was well matched with Craighall Chardonnay. I declared it all tasted like being on holiday.

So good, yes, Chardonnay never went away.

So good, yes, Chardonnay never went away.

Lamb rack and braised neck, wild thyme honeyed caramelised yoghurt, black garlic, brussels and shiitake. A lovely dish and went very well with both reds. My favourite match was the Syrah.

Lamb rack and braised neck, wild thyme honeyed caramelised yoghurt, black garlic, brussels and shiitake. A lovely dish and went very well with both reds. My favourite match was the Syrah.

Pina Colada coconut yoghurt mousse, rum pineapple and coconut sponge. A full of wonder that left us all silent as we devoured this delightful dessert.

Pina Colada coconut yoghurt mousse, rum pineapple and coconut sponge. This caused a moment of silence as we devoured this delightful dessert.

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A last minute surprise of Petit Fours, a sampler of what is offered on the dessert menu. A perfect way to finish a perfect evening.

Thank you Zomato, Chameleon at the Intercontinental and Ata Rangi Martinborough.