Chocolatour at chocolate events

November has been a busy month for Chocolatour!

This pic was taken by Jessica of JAG Photography and shows us judging the Single Origin Chocolate of Costa Rica.

This pic was taken by Jessica of JAG Photography and shows us judging the Single Origin Chocolate of Costa Rica.

At the end of October, I was a judge at the Puerto Viejo Chocolate Festival in Costa Rica. I stayed on for a few days into early November, meeting chocolate makers and investigating chocolate for the second volume of Chocolatour. You can find copies of volume I at Caribeans, profiled in this post.

After a brief rest at home, I headed to Kingston, Ontario, where I gave a presentation about the world of fine chocolate at an event sponsored by the Writers Union of Canada Reading Program (made possible via a grant from the Canada Council for the Arts. )

In Kingston at Sugar Swan Sweet Shop.

In Kingston at Sugar Swan Sweet Shop.

You’ll learn more about Ridgway Confections and Sugar Swan (where copies of Chocolatour are on sale) in future posts on my chocolate travel blog, but do drop in and meet Ken and Tanya is you’re looking for some terrific chocolate or candy.

Doreen at Readers' Favorite

And from there, I headed straight to Miami, Florida, where Chocolatour was awarded a bronze medal in the 2014 Readers’ Favorite International Book Awards. Such an exciting moment!

On November 29th, author Arthur Slade and I hosted a crowdfunding workshop at the Winnipeg Millennium Library organized by the Professional Writers Association of Canada and funded by the Winnipeg Public Library.

Arthur Slade and I conducted crowdfunding campaigns at the same time on Indiegogo.

Arthur Slade and I conducted crowdfunding campaigns at the same time on Indiegogo.

My next event is on December 4th at the Gaynor Regional Library in Selkirk, Manitoba, where I’ll be giving a chocolate talk at 7 pm. Please join us if you can. I’ll have copies of Chocolatour on hand to help with your Christmas shopping. If you can’t make it, you can order the book here. (Discounts are available for multiple copies.)

If you have a chocolate event you’d like to have me at, drop me a line! My goal is to attend every chocolate event that promotes artisan chocolate,  and to experience the world of fine chocolate  in virtually every part of the world. With your help and support … I’ll get there!

Doreen Pendgracs

Known throughout the Web as the "Wizard of Words", I've been a freelance writer since 1993. I'm currently researching and writing volume II of "Chocolatour: A Quest for the World's Best Chocolate". Volume I was published in September, 2013.

36 Responses

  1. Thx so much for your comment, and my apologies for the delay in responding. Yes, the world of chocolate has become my world. I am so very much enjoying discovering all of it. I feel most grateful to have forged this new niche and am thrilled to share the chocolate travel journey with everyone who wants to come along for the ride.
    Doreen Pendgracs recently posted…Chocolatouring in 2015My Profile

  2. You get to judge at chocolate festivals too? That sounds like so much fun! Good for you. It’s great to see that you have been able to combine your passions for chocolate, traveling and writing into a career.
    Sherryl Perry recently posted…Twitter, Content Marketing and Social Media ResourcesMy Profile

  3. Hi Doreen,

    I am so impressed of how you do it all! You have chosen a fantastic niche which is brilliant! Promoting your book in so many places must be so much fun.

    I’m sure your journey will continue to be even more successful. I loved reading this because there is nothing better than a success story!

    donna merrill recently posted…The 10 Best Ways To Blog in 2015My Profile

  4. What a whirlwind life you lead Doreen! I can think of a LOT of people who would be green with envy about your fascinating profession. A couple of years ago I wrote an article about the history of chocolate for a Valentine’s Day article and it was quite an eye opener and absolutely fascinating!
    Marquita Herald recently posted…Exploring the Irresistible Need to PleaseMy Profile

    • doreen says:

      Thanks for your comment, Marquita.

      Yes, chocolate is indeed a fascinating world. I love it!

      But or anyone “green with envy,” please note that this work does not come with a big paycheque. In fact, it costs me a lot of money to get to the places I must visit in my research. It’s only thru the sale of books, some speaking engagements and the occasional freelance assignment that I am able to make it happen. But I love what I do, am committed to my project (Chocolatour) and will continue to find ways to get myself to the places I have to get, to be able to tell the story of artisan chocolate to chocolate lovers around the world.
      doreen recently posted…Chocolatour at chocolate eventsMy Profile

  5. I’m not too familiar with the world of fine chocolates, although, I’m yet to taste a type of chocolate that I’ve hated. My favorite type, hands down, is dark chocolate, which my wife is not a fan of. What’s yours?

    Also, congratulations on your success. It definitely looks like you’ve effectively grown your brand.
    Andrew Smith recently posted…My First Thanksgiving TurkeyMy Profile

    • doreen says:

      Hi Andrew, and thanks for your comment.

      Yes, I’ve really been working hard at building the Chocolatour brand. I think it’s finally all coming together!

      Re the type of chocolate I like best, there are many! I think you and your wife would have some fun with my book as it helps match you with different chocolate makers depending on your mood and the occasion. Keep experimenting! each one is always adding new flavours and themes to their chocolate offerings.
      doreen recently posted…Chocolatour at chocolate eventsMy Profile

  6. Jason says:

    Those chocolate tours sound interesting. If you’re ever in Atlanta I would attend.
    Jason recently posted…Ending 2014 on a Positive and Productive NoteMy Profile

  7. Jeri says:

    That’s a harsh life you lead, being able to combine your passion for chocolate with a love of travel. I’ve often thought about going back to working in national parks, but at this stage of life, that would entail living in an RV. Who knows? Maybe it’s in my future 😉
    Jeri recently posted…#ShortStory: The Best American Short StoriesMy Profile

  8. Arleen says:

    Doreen that is incredible what you have accomplished. You selected a career in something that it is hard for most people to resist. Great idea to reach out to all of us. Not sure what there is in New Jersey but you never know. Across the river in PA I have stayed at the Hersey Hotel which is upscale and when you check in they gave you a bar of Hersey Chocolate. Nothing like a chocolate town.
    Arleen recently posted…How to Stimulate CreativityMy Profile

  9. Pat Bodman says:

    HI Doreen,

    Congratulations on the bronze medal award!!! I love the way you create opportunities and challenges in life and then share with all of us.
    I believe that you are going to be very busy in the near future. Can’t wait to hear about your chocolate travels with CAA. I think you are going to be a great fit for them.

  10. Megan says:

    From the beaches to snow with chocolate! Thank you for taking us on your amazing journey on this rainy morning. It is truly great to see happiness and hardwork recognized. Congratulations on receiving your medal in Miami!

  11. Jody says:

    Wow! Travel the world to look for the best chocolate? Count me in! 🙂

  12. Congratulations on your success!! You really mix 2 of the best things in life…travel and chocolate!! Amazing!

    • doreen says:

      Thanks so much, Noelle, and welcome to the blog!

      Yes, beginning in 2015, we’ll be doing chocolate travel tours with CAA Travel here in Canada. I think that chocolate tourism is definitely the new niche, and I’m proud to be at the forefront.
      doreen recently posted…Chocolatour at chocolate eventsMy Profile

  13. Ken Dowell says:

    Sadly, the only chocolate events I have ever attended were at Hershey, Pa. Not exactly a place where the produce artisan chocolate.
    Ken Dowell recently posted…Americans Discover Vacation: Overcoming Our HeritageMy Profile

  14. You’ve been a busy lady. What an exciting time for you. I enjoy reading all about it and finding out more about chocolate.
    Donna Janke recently posted…Art and Wine on the WaterfrontMy Profile

  15. Lenie says:

    Doreen, wow, you are one busy gal – hard to believe chocolate can keep you that busy but I am so thrilled for you. I hope many will choose the book for Christmas and I wish you the very best. This time, next year Gold.

  16. doreen says:

    Hi Susan: I will be in beautiful British Columbia for the month of January. Really looking forward to that. And yes … there WILL be chocolate!
    doreen recently posted…thankful for my friendsMy Profile

  17. Hi Doreen, You’ve had a whirlwind couple months promoting your book and traveling. How fun! So happy for you and your success and recognition. Can’t wait to see where in the world you pop up next sampling some magnificent chocolate.

  18. andleeb says:

    Hello Doreen

    It is nice to see you promoting your book and good to know about feed back that you are receiving and happy to know about the recognition of your five years work.

    Congrats for your Bronze medal.
    andleeb recently posted…Uncertainty of Life!My Profile

  19. Alice says:

    I didn’t know you could make a living on chocolate tours, talks, and tastings. Hmm, I may change careers!
    Alice recently posted…Case of the Month: the Zeigler wrongful convictionMy Profile

  20. Completely thrilled for you and your success Doreen! I love that you are getting to promote your book at so many places…and then sharing them with us too! Somehow Christmas and chocolate go together, so I hope this is a particularly abundant time of year for you. I’ll keep my ears open for an event here in Charleston SC:)
    Jacqueline Gum recently posted…Wisdom and Aging… Where’s The Justice?My Profile

    • doreen says:

      Thx so much, Jacquie! That ‘s why I did this post. I wanted to people to know that I’m available for a wide variety of chocolate events, and that I’m interested in hearing about fine chocolate and chocolate events in all parts of the world. I had just found out about the Costa Rica Chocolate Festival by chance, when I saw a comment on FB referring to it. Thank goodness for friends — in all places!
      doreen recently posted…Chocolatour at chocolate eventsMy Profile

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