Call 416.386.0940 or email
RSVP your Chocolatada dish to share,
if you are staying afterwards for the
social, directly to MaryJo
Chocolatada with Chocosol
Presenter: Michael Sacco MEd, PhD(c) & ChocoSol’s Founder
Join Chocosol for an informative, interactive chocolatada experience! Not only will you walk away appreciating the craft of chocolate making, but you will gain a thorough understanding on cacao’s history, its medicinal properties and how to incorporate its many nutritional benefits into your practice.
Whether by supporting the Indigenous spiritual ecology of forest gardens through horizontal intercultural trade; using whole food ingredients; low heat, low shear-processing techniques to maintain the volatiles in cacao; or even by the way the chocolate is packaged and pedaled, chocolate is not to be seen as a panacea, but as a symbol of hope and as an invitation to be part of the change.
Cacao is the food of the gods, and yet for the last 500 years it has undergone a process that has led it to becoming the candy of the masses. Re-generating and re-connecting to cacao in the 21st century is a teachable moment that shows us how we can connect to traditions thousands of years in the making while, at the same time, remaking new techniques, recipes, relationships, and traditions that are healthy, ecological, medicinal, and tasty!
The evening will consist of three groups moving through different stations every 30 minutes, beginning at 6:00 pm.
Plan on arriving 15-20 minutes earlier to get settled so the program can begin at 6:00 pm sharp.
Evening limited to 30 alumni or students—10 people per station..
Station 1: Taste education
• A guided tasting and knowledge sharing on cacao.
• Address the nutritional and medicinal properties of cacao and how to incorporate into ones practice
• Cacao as a vehicle of conviviality, hospitality, friendship
• Learning about the different varietals of cacao
Station 2: Chocolate food making with our expert chocolatiers
• Learning about stone ground, low heat low time chocolate foods.
• How we process cacao to retain the properties (antioxidants, flavanols)
• Indigenous knowledge and tradition in chocolate making (both traditional and re-interpreted)
• Working with forest garden ingredients that are in symbiotic relationship
• Chocosol’s sourcing: Mexico, Ecuador and Dominican Republic
Station 3: Discussion on forest garden intellectual research led by Michael Sacco
• The history and political landscape of cacao
• Why cacao is considered the “food of the gods”
• The connection between mind, body, and soil
• Interculturality and spiritual ecology
• Going beyond fair trade: direct trade relationships
At 7:30 after the formal workshop is over, it is time for socializing and the chocolatada! ChocoSol invites attendees to bring a nut-free vegan or vegetarian dish to share. As Michael puts it “feel free to dwell, to socialize, and create social compost in the spirit of the chocolatada!” Michael and the ChocoSolistas who guided the sessions will be present for additional Q&A time and conversation.
After the workshop is over attendees can purchase any items in the storefront for a workshop of discount of 15 percent! Chocosol also offers a BYOC (bring your own container) discount for even better deals. ChocoSol encourages the participants to take advantage of these specials, as it allows and supports them to do their work in a dignified way.
Things to bring:
• Indoor shoes (closed-toe), an apron, clean clothes
• Optional:A nut-free vegetarian or vegan dish to share for the chocolatada. If you are planning on staying after the formal program, please RSVP so we have an idea of numbers.
• Good mind and convivial spirit!
About the Presenter
Michael Sacco received his Masters of Environmental Studies from York University in 2003 and continued his education with a three year Doctoral Apprenticeship at the Universidad de la Tierra in Mexico. He is currently a PhD Candidate in Indigenous Studies at Trent University.
At work in ChocoSol, Sacco describes himself as a technologist, writer, and chocolate molinero. In Oaxaca, Mexico in 2004 he founded ChocoSol: an artisanal chocolate research-based company, which he termed a ‘learning community social enterprise’. Their focus is on making the ‘food of the gods’ – commonly known as cacao – into fresh, whole food, stone ground chocolate on an artisanal scale using organic, forest garden, shade-grown cacao, sourced directly from horizontal trade relationships with Indigenous communities in Southern Mexico. Through a reciprocity-based horizontal trading technique that includes technology, ecology, and social engagement, ChocoSol has come to support the diversity of the cacao forest gardens while rooting itself in the socio-ecological fabrics of Southern Ontario. ChocoSol chocolates are made without dairy, gluten, soy, and nuts, and are also vegan, and they specialize in both eating chocolate and drinking chocolate (xocolatl), and offer a number of other sustainably grown ingredients that are sourced directly from farmers (such as coffee, cacao nibs, and vanilla pods, among others). In addition to producing sustainable artisanal chocolate, ChocoSol also organizes and hosts chocolate and tortilla events all over the city. They offer educational workshops and catering, organize seminars and events, and work collaboratively with many food and environmental organizations to advance and support local food systems and the development of products made in Ontario. At ChocoSol “the chocolate is an expression of and vehicle for our dignity, creativity, and learning.”