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The International Chocolate Festival comes to Fairchild.

Coo-coo for Cocoa!

by Joseph Daniel Lasik | Miami magazine | January 16, 2012

How do you spell indulge? Fairchild Tropical Garden knows. This weekend, the park is hosting its annual International Chocolate Festival, Jan. 20-22, three days of cocoa excess of the sweetest kind. Running each day from 9:30AM to 4:30PM, the event offers everything from artisan chocolate samplings to lectures on the treat’s history. Not to be missed is the Choco-Walk, a tour that takes visitors through the Rainforest and Conservatory Edible Garden as they learn about the life cycle of the cacao plant, and From Bean to Bar, an interactive presentation from the experts at Mars, Inc. that covers the processes of chocolate production from early colonial times to the present. Preceding the weekend’s main event, on Jan. 20, Mars invites guests to an exclusive breakfast and multi-sensorial presentation of chocolate’s origins in the Olmec, Aztec and Mayan cultures. From 8:30AM-10:00AM, join Rodney Snyder, history director for Mars, as he leads a roundtable-style discussion on the history of chocolate, from its beginnings in the rain forests of Central and South America at least 3,500 years ago (RSVP is required at hdm@brandbuildingpr.com). A full list of events and times can be found on the Fairchild website. Admission is free for Fairchild members and children 5 and under. For non-members: $25 for adults, $18 for seniors 65 and up and $12 for children 6 to 17. Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, 10901 Old Cutler Road, Coral Gables, 305.667.1651, fairchildgarden.org