Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Will Walk for Chocolate

It was Groupon weekend!  We had a Groupon for an over night stay at The Benson, which was so fun!  We love staying downtown over the weekend, playing tourist.  We are so good about exploring little neighborhoods tucked away in cities we visit when we travel.  But we sometimes forget to do that in our own hometown.  So, a few times a year, we'll spend a night in downtown Portland, and explore our fun city.

The Benson is truly one of my favorites.  It is classic Portland to me.  The Palm Court lobby bar is a wonderful place to take your book, have a glass of wine, and pretend to read whilst people-watching.  El Gaucho has magnificent food.  And the rooms are to-die-for-comfy.  We had a junior suite this weekend, and enjoyed having the extra bit of lounging room (all the better to utilize those decadent bathrobes and slippers...with another glass of wine).  The bathroom has a big cast iron tub, perfect for a bubbly-bath. 

Also, aren't my new shoes a.dor.a.ble.???

The cherry blossoms are gorgeous right now.  These are the late-bloomers.  Big pink fluffy confetti poufs.
 So, where does the title for this post come in?  Well.  We had a second Groupon for a Chocolate Decadence Tour with Portland Walking Tours.  How.Fun.Is.That?!  Highly recommend!  It took about two-and-a-half hours, covering about a mile-and-a-half and about 6-8 stops along the way.  Favorites like Cacao, Moonstruck, and even back to the Palm Court at The Benson for a chocolate martini.

While sipping, our tour guide Brad gave us a little run-down on the magic chocolate pod, cacao.   Quite fascinating, really, how my chocolate bar comes from a seed pod.

 These are little cacao nibs from the plant.  Reminded me a lot of espresso beans.  Upon tasting (like crunching on bark, frankly) you do get the sense of chocolate in there somewhere.

 On the tour, we passed this bit of art, a tribute to the Zoo Bombers, as well as a place for them to store their gear. 

 Apparently, this group of daredevils rides Max up to Washington Park with their kiddie bikes, then bomb down, down, down all the way into Portland.  Funny!

 There is even a sightless person, who is called "The Blind Bomber" and rides on a tandem bike behind a sighted Bomber.  Crazy.

 A little sampling of our samplings.  Each stop had several little tastings for us from truffles, to drinking chocolate, to bon bons, to, believe it or not, dark chocolate basalmic vinegar.  Delish.

 Surprisingly, we weren't completely chocolated-out at the end of the tour.  Oh sure, we had our fill.  We just weren't on overload.  Perfect.

 Some of the presentation was eye-candy itself.

 Our new friend at Cacao, describing different levels of cacao within different chocolates.  Really interesting.

Supersuperfun afternoon. 

1 comment:

Laurie said...

What a great weekend. The chocolate tour sounds so fun, who can resist good chocolate!!!