On view for the very first time is a small lump of chocolate from the 5th century, making it one of the oldest pieces ever found. And if you?re reading this thinking, ?Hmmmm, I?d eat it anyway,? then Central Park West is where you should be heading this weekend. The exhibit lasts until Sept. 7, with free chocolate tastings every weekend.
Many civilizations from the Mayans through the Aztecs to the Spaniards, who were the first to add sugar, have contributed to the lure and allure of chocolate. Although the Irish didn?t have an enormous role in the evolution of chocolate, Ireland has the third highest consumption per capita of confectionary in the world. ?Take Five? spoke to five people whose lives would be incomplete without ?Irish? chocolate.
Irish author Marian Keyes, whose latest bestseller, ?Angel,? is in bookstores nationwide, is almost as well known for her great love of chocolate as she is for her novels.
?Men will come and men will go but there will always be chocolate,? she said. ?It?s more affordable than Prada handbags, less destructive than alcohol and always brightens my day, regardless of the weather. (With the possible exception of very hot weather, when it melts all over the inside of my Prada bag.)?
When Ibrahim Soliman, an Egyptian by birth, moved to London in the early 1990s, he encountered the two great loves of his life, both Irish: his wife, Fiona Walsh, from Tipperary, and chocolate.
?When we go back to Ireland to visit Fiona?s family, my mother-in-law always has a large box of Celebrations waiting for me ?- it?s usually empty by the time we leave,? Soliman said. ?We always stock up on Irish chocolate when we?re back. Right now the fridge contains about 7 pounds of assorted Cadbury?s bars -? time for another trip. I?m opening a caf