gourmandise santa Monica chocolate society
chocolate tastings

The Santa Monica Chocolate Society

Tastings, Discussions & Guests

The Santa Monica Chocolate Society is a club of sorts that celebrates and savors the finest, rarest, most delicious chocolates on Earth.

We gather on the first Thursday of each month to taste regional bean-to-bar chocolates and meet, often with a guest speaker, ranging from cacao farmers to the craft chocolate makers themselves.

Led by The Gourmandise School chocolate expert Ruth Kennison, the group is inspired by her many adventures across the equatorial “chocolate belt” and her work with craft chocolate makers. At each gathering, Ruth shares whatever’s fresh and exciting from her wonder cabinet of carefully curated bars and bonbons. Interested in more? Check out THE CHOCOLATE PAGE to read our blog posts and for tips and resources for buying craft and baking chocolates.

Vive la Révolution!

A new generation of craft chocolate makers is reinventing the way we produce and eat chocolate. Like beer and coffee, these specialty makers take great care with each step of their process, from who’s growing the beans (and whether farmers are being paid fairly) to subtle nuances of flavor through roasting, fermentation and other techniques. These small-batch artisans aim to bring quality and transparency back to a chocolate industry dominated by giant megabrands that mass-produce confections for consistency of taste and high profit. In the new chocolate revolution, the focus is on fairness, freshness and flavor. No Bonbon Will Be Left Behind!