To my surprise, two wonderful treats, chocolate and beer, combine incredibly well into a mixture of flavors and aromas that this year’s Eurochocolate festival is showcasing. Slightly bittersweet dark chocolate pairs perfectly with the toasted malt and hoppy aroma of Angelo Poretti’s newest frothy creation: 7 Hops Unfiltered Amber. In the past, Angelo Poretti’s beers did not have characteristics that would allow for a particularly natural pairing.
Aside from the Chocolate festival, Perguia is an awesome city because it melds the historical past with hip student culture of the present. Little has changed within the city walls in the past 400 years architecturally, but the culture has a modern feel with a never ending stream of concerts and events sure to keep you entertained. It is one of the biggest student cities in Europe and home to University of Perguia and University of Foreigners with 39,000 plus students combined. Piazza IV Novembre is the heart of Perugia. It’s a large, open square where locals and visitors congregate. In the center is a beautiful fountain, the Fontana Maggiore, surrounded by the Duomo (said to hold the virgin’s wedding ring), the Palazzo dei Priori, and medieval buildings with shops and bars. You can still see homes of royal medieval families if you stroll through Rocco Paolino, a once massive 16th century fortress.
Every year, the capital city of Umbria, Perguia, turns into heaven on Earth for over one million chocolate lovers from all over. Perugina, Lindt, and Caffarel are just a few of the popular chocolate brands represented. Visitors can enjoy chocolate tastings, chocolate art displays, street performers, and chocolate sculptors. A 7,936 lb igloo constructed entirely out of chocolate bricks has been built in previous years. Indulge in snacks and souvenirs like chocolate covered bananas, chocolate bricks, chocolates molds, and chocolate liqueur.
Combining chocolate and beer will awaken your palate and bring out the fresh smoothness of chocolate and the classic bitterness of beer. “In particular, the 7 hops Not Filtered Amber, official beer of Eurochocolate 2012, remembers the taste of spicy and herbal notes that affinity finds the right exaltation with some individual characteristics of chocolate,” said Meschini Monica, official Chocolate Taster at this year’s festival. If you want to explore the world of chocolate and beer more intensely, you can make an appointment with Porreti for an exclusive event in a dedicated area of the festival.
The 7 Hops Unfiltered Amber will be available on tap and in bottles throughout the festival along with limited edition chocolates by Poretti and Chocolate Denis Buosi. Also, spread throughout the streets of the event you can find the Original Chiara to 4 Hops Lager which is brewed in a traditional italian fashion creating a golden color and fruity aromatic notes. Missed Oktoberfest? Bring out the best of beer AND chocolate at Eurochocolate in Perugia this year!
Article by Katie Conners
As I (sadly) finish up my final days in Florence, I’ve been reflecting on the lessons I’ve learned and the memories I’ve