Ghirardelli marks 160 sweet years

Getty Images File PhotoDelicious desserts: Treats galore are the subject of the 17th annual Ghirardelli Chocolate Festival at Ghirardelli Square this weekend.

Getty Images File PhotoDelicious desserts: Treats galore are the subject of the 17th annual Ghirardelli Chocolate Festival at Ghirardelli Square this weekend.

A technique called conching is one of the main reasons for the long success of the Ghirardelli Chocolate Company, celebrating its 160th anniversary this year.

The process — which removes bitterness and strips astringency from roasted cocoa beans — results in the rich, indulgent flavor that characterizes confections made by Ghirardelli, which, incorporated in 1852, is America’s oldest premium chocolate maker.

“We manage every step of the process ourselves,” says Steve Genzoli, Ghirardelli’s vice president of development and quality assurance, who is leading chef demonstrations and “chocolate school” this weekend at the 17th annual Ghirardelli Chocolate Festival in Ghirardelli Square. The event is a benefit for Project Open Hand.

#link_box { width: 200px; height: auto; margin: 0; padding: 0; margin: 10px 20px 10px 0px; padding: 10px; background-color: #fbfade; /* ecru – light yellow */ border: 1px solid #343a25; /* green – for summer arts */ float: left; font-family: arial, sans serif; font-size: 11px; } #link_box img, #link_box a { border 0px; border-style: none; outline: none; } #link_box h1 { margin: 0; padding: 5px; border-bottom: 1px solid #ddd; text-transform: none; color: #8A0808; font-family: arial, sans serif; font-weight: bold; font-size: 12px; text-align: center; } #link_box h2 { margin: 0; padding: 5px; border-bottom: 1px solid #ddd; text-transform: none; color: #000; font-family: arial, sans serif; font-weight: bold; font-size: 10px; text-align: center; } #link_box ul { list-style: none; margin: 0; padding: 0; border: none; } #link_box li { margin: 0px padding: 0px; border-bottom: 1px solid #ddd; border-bottom-width: 1px; } #link_box li a { display: block; padding: 5px 5px 5px 15px; /* Padding for bullet */ /* border-bottom: 1px solid #ddd; border-bottom-width: 1px; */ color: #000; width: 100%; width: auto; /* height: auto; */ /* border: 1px solid blue; */ margin: 0px; font-family: arial, sans serif; font-size: 11px; line-height: 14px; text-decoration: none; } #link_box li a: before { /* background-position: top left; */ } #link_box li a:hover { background-color: #ddd; color: #000; }

Saturday and Sunday feature ice cream-eating contests in which competitors, using no hands or spoons, vie to consume an eight-scoop Earthquake sundae the fastest. Live music, 35 vendor booths offering samples of treats ranging from chocolate tea to chocolate marshmallows and hot fudge sundaes, and a bake-off — the winner will be announced at 3:30 p.m. Sunday — also are in the lineup.

One free activity is a scavenger hunt in Ghirardelli Square (which was named a San Francisco city landmark in 1965) in which participants discover fun facts as they make a virtual hot fudge sundae. Those who solve the clues win a treat.

Although Ghirardelli chocolate is no longer produced in San Francisco — factory operations, established by Italian immigrant Domenico Ghirardelli in the 19th century, moved to San Leandro in 1967 — Ghirardelli remains the country’s oldest continuously operating chocolate manufacturer.

Ghirardelli President and CEO Martin Thompson says, “For 160 years, customers have enjoyed our wide range of chocolate and we look forward to presenting exciting new flavors for many years to come.”

artsentertainmentGhirardelli Chocoloate CompanyGhirardelli SquareOther Arts

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

A ban on smoking or vaping in multi-unit buildings has drawn opposition from cannabis advocates, who say it would leave users with no legal place to consume a legal substance. (Shutterstock)
Cannabis group slams Yee’s proposed apartment smoking ban as ‘classist’

Legislation would impose fines of $1,000 a day on repeat violators

The most dangerous behaviors by drivers include failing to yield right-of-way at crosswalks, unsafe speeding and failing to stop at red lights or stop signs. <ins>(Ekevara Kitpowsong/Special to S.F. Examiner)</ins>
Hetch Hetchy in Yosemite, which supplies water to San Francisco, is among the concerns of the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission, which is undergoing a change of leadership. <ins>(Courtesy SFPUC)</ins>
Changes in leadership at SFPUC spark concern, hope for future water policy

Will agency’s new commissioner continue to support Big Ag?

Supervisor Shamann Walton joined with community members to speak out against rising homicides, which have taken a heavy toll in the Bayview-Hunters Point in 2020. (Samantha Laurey/ Special to S.F Examiner)
SF homicides surpass 2019 total with month left in year

Police attribute rise to COVID-19, shootings and deadly gang violence

A screenshot from SFPD body worn camera
New videos show police shooting man armed with knife, frying pan

Police say Antonio Estrada set fire to apartment building before shooting

Most Read