It was a little over a year ago that a fourth type of chocolate was created by a genius team of Swiss-Belgian chocolatiers. And Japan – ever the lover of gimmicky foods and eccentric flavours – has leapt on ruby chocolate like you wouldn’t believe. Earlier this year Japan began selling the ruby chocolate flavour of KitKat, and now the ANA InterContinental Tokyo has unveiled to the world its ruby chocolate festival!
On 1st November we were invited by the ANA InterContinental Tokyo to see the fruits of some very impressive labour. Renowned and celebrated chefs and bakers from across Japan showcased their own ruby chocolate delicacies all exquisitely beautiful and delicious. And the hotel pastry chefs at the Ana InterContinental Tokyo have presented the world’s first ever ruby chocolate afternoon tea.
What is Ruby Chocolate?
In case you’re not familiar, ruby chocolate is a new form of chocolate, sans any artificial colours or flavours, naturally pink and with a subtly fruity taste despite a complete absence of fruit flavours. This new form of chocolate has chocoholics in a spin, and to see the ways it has kindled so much creative fire in so many chocolatiers was truly a sight to behold.
Our own experience on the evening of 1st November was a demonstration and welcome ceremony by the hotel, the chefs, and the event’s organisers, followed by a tour around the lobby to see photography by one of Japan’s most famous food photographers; this art adorned the walls behind several sculptures, all three of which were made entirely out of a mix of all four kinds of chocolate (including ruby, of course).
During the tour, we sampled the different types of ruby chocolate products on offer by companies from all over Japan and Europe. To top it off, the champagne bar welcomed us with a buffet of ruby chocolate delights for us to sample at our leisure. To see what could be done with so little was truly awe-inspiring. A siphon coffee demonstration was one of the high points.
The afternoon tea acted as the opening ceremony to an event they have called Chocolate Sensations: an international culinary festival celebrating not just ruby chocolate, but all chocolate. It is running across all 11 restaurants and bars in the ANA InterContinental Tokyo until 26th December.
What will you be able to do?
During this time, you can come and enjoy workshops and seminars, all staged by international bean-to-bar specialists, artisanal producers of fine chocolates, and local curators of chocolate.
Experiencing a new kind of chocolate, crafted and prepared by the best in the business, is the most incredible introduction to a new taste. If you’re in Tokyo any time before December 26th we urge you to visit the ANA InterContinental Tokyo and take part in a few workshops and seminars, and experience chocolate in the best way possible. Upon entering, we were told ‘you’ll never think about chocolate in the same way again. And they were right.