Saturday, May 8, 2010


I am so excited about the new molds and gift boxes I've ordered, one of which is the Casino Special, which consists of Blackjack cards, roulette wheel, a pair of dice and a slot machine, together with actual casino chips (which of course have to be boiled to make them food-safe).

Note the package at the center, bottom, of the photo:

My plan is to place two $100 chips in the receptacles and bring the whole thing to a casino with the idea in mind that they send this gift to their high- rollers and whales.

Naturally, some percentage of the recipients will keep the chips, some will cash them in, but most, being gamblers, will play them and, of course, lose them -- those big casinos were not built as monuments to the winners.

What it means is that the casino has attracted someone into their shop, and that the cost of the chips will come back to them as winnings -- all they pay for actually is the chocolate and the specialty box.

I can have the box printed for them as well, so it makes a very hot presentation package for the casino or hotel/casino for their big clients.

The package at the middle right of the photo is a wine set, consisting of wine glass, bottles, cork and cork-puller, all of course in rich dark chocolate.

We're in the middle of the New Wine Country, the foothills of the Sierra- Nevada, where there are 17 new wineries this year alone. We have 14 wine- tasting rooms along Mill Street and Main Street, several more in Nevada City, and more are going up every day, due to the new ABC Alcohol Beverage Control fees and regulations. You can now put in an on-sale store for only $1,000 a year in regulatory fees, compared to the hundreds of thousands it cost just a year or two ago, so every restaurant has an on-sale license, and wine tasting rooms are going up everywhere.

Another phenomenon is the Fake Wine-Tasting Room. It's a wine bar disguised as a winery outlet. There are several of them along the street as well. My opinion is that the merchants are doing their damndest to attract tourist and get them rolling drunk as they promenade down our main street.

I think it'll work. There were some 10,000 tourists on the Winery Tour this season, and we're now the starting point for two of the most important bicycle races in the country, with expected tourists this year numbering in the hundreds of thousands, a big jump from several years ago.

Wine, chocolate and roses go together. They are inseparable in the romantic region and legend in the area of weddings, anniversaries, baby showers, Valentine's Day and Mothers' Day, and recently Divorce Parties have become very popular. A marriage is a marriage, but a divorce is forever. That at least is the theory, although there are exceptions to every rule.

Chocolates have a definite market in graduation, confirmation, bar and bat mitzvahs and every other occasion Hallmark Cards can dream up to celebrate. Chocolates have a definite place at Christmas, Channukah, Thanksgiving Day and Halloween.

On the lower right of the photo, you'll see a squarish sort of thing -- it's not the greatest photo and I plan to have it stunningly photographed when I get the first one out of my kitchen. It's non-seasonal, and has an almost universal appeal. It's a Zodiac Bar. I've bought the set of 12 molds to make these, along with 1000 custom boxes to house them. Naturally, my version of these will be in rich dark Costa Rican Single-Source chocolate.

In the middle row, far right, you'll see a chocolate greeting card, measuring about 8" in length and about 3" in width, by 3/8" deep. Naturally, I'll be making it in dark chocolate, and I'll be designing molds for this best-selling box. This is the best-selling of all chocolate boxed items with the singular exception of the heart boxes, but they only sell at Valentine's Day.

The greeting cards will be, of course, for birthdays, graduations, weddings and other festive events, but they will also be made in sculptural relief forms in my sculpture studio, with all sorts of themes and art ideas.

To anticipate your question, yes, I can also make the dinosaurs, letters and so forth, if wanted, but it's a minimum order of 1,000 units, so I doubt I'll be doing them. The dinosaurs would be great for museums, and the tooth would work well for dentists and tooth-fairy gifts.

The sports collection has everything; soccer, sailing, raquet sports, tennis, trophy, hockey puck, hockey stick & puck, baseball ball, bat & mitt, golf bag & balls, four major sports set and skiing. These could work well online as well as at sports events, sports bars and sporting goods outlets. Don't forget, chocolates are NOT refrigerated, so they can sit in or on a counter!

Here is a collection related to DAD and men in general...We're in an area that is very focused on motorbikes -- there are many bike clubs and biker bars in the area, and there is an enormous antique car club here, larger than most in the country, with thousands of members and a two-hour long parade when they have events.

The bikes and antique cars are given street fairs every year here, and they probably are in your hometown, too. Stock car races are everywhere, and there's a box for them as well. The fishing set would appeal to any fisherman, and the guitar is an obvious gift, especially in America, where the #1 best-selling instrument is the guitar.

There's a hunting set, tractor-trailer and necktie box as well. Each of these represents an investment of about $600 plus the chocolate and the time and energy to produce them.

Here's a group of women's and girls items:

Mom, Princess Set, Cosmetic Set, Baby Set, Manicure Set, Hairdresser Set, Baker's Set, Shopping Set, Ballerina Set and Slipper Gift Box.

Professions include:

Musician Set, Power Tools, Tool Set, Gardening Set, Teacher Set, Firefighter Set, Police Set, Legal Set, Medical Set, Construction Contractor Set.


Wireless iPhone SmartPhone, Remote, Cell Phone, Desktop Computer, Personal Organizer, Handheld Gamer, Toy Cell, Compact Disk CD, Vinyl LP Record, Mouse & Disk Set.

I also plan to have in stock Heart Boxes Galore, with great assortments to go in each and every one of them!

In addition, I've purchased Food Safe mold supplies, with which I've been making unique sculptural chocolates.

One more item on the agenda are these custom promotionals. Any business can improve its customer-relations with these stunning and memorable chocolate presentations. Nothing says it better than chocolate!


Saturday, May 1, 2010

Blue is Blue - The House Concert

Blue is Blue
-- a smooth jazzy, blues performance for the band, which features, as a special guest, the charming young Canadian singer-songwriter Maia Leia, performing her new single. A concert not to be missed.

available @