Chocolate, Wine and All That Jazz celebrates triumvirate of tastes

July 17, 2012

By Lillian O'Rorke

Attendees at last year’s Chocolate, Wine & All That Jazz enjoy the festivities at Boehms Candies. Contributed

Chocolate, Wine and All That Jazz is just around the corner and this year it’s bigger than ever.

Put on by the Issaquah Chamber of Commerce and Boehms Candies since 1988, the evening of wine, food and jazz in the gardens at Boehms is set to be twice as large as past festivals.

“Whether it’s entertainment and apparel or arts and crafts and all kinds of various wines and fares,” said Laura Walker, event organizer, “we were trying to make it a little different and unique from all the other wine-tasting events while showcasing Issaquah businesses.”

Tickets include entry, a souvenir wine glass and plate, and food and drink samples from all the various vendors. Booths featuring Washington wines and samples of favorite dishes from local restaurants will be set up around the chocolate factory’s garden. Attendees will also be serenaded by the three voices of jazz trio Tish, Hans and Phil.

For the first time, the event has been expanded to include arts and crafts. Local creative minds will be on hand selling blown-glass wine stoppers and chocolate body products. ArtEAST’s 2012 Rookery Project will also be on display. The project pays tribute to the heron by displaying 30 artists’ different 3-D representations of the bird.

Artists are not the only new faces. Among this year’s additions are two of Issaquah’s newest businesses, Filos Pizza and Pasta, and Palettes and Pairings.

“We like chocolate, we like wine, we like music. There is nothing not to like,” Elizabeth Shriner said.

She and her husband are opening their creperie/wine bar/art studio, Palettes and Pairings, Aug. 1 in Gilman Village. The business will serve drinks and appetizers while customers work on a painting under the tutelage of an art instructor.

If you go

Chocolate, Wine and All That Jazz

  • 5:30-8:30 p.m. July 26
  • Boehms Candies
  • 225 N.E. Gilman Blvd.
  • Tickets are $40 — get them at www.cwatj.org.
  • 21 and older only

“It will be great to get the community excited about what we do,” she said. “Anybody can pick up a brush and leave with a completed painting.”

At Chocolate, Wine and All That Jazz, Palettes and Pairings will have several paintings on display and even a few blank 5×7 canvasses for those who want to indulge their inner Picasso.

“I definitely look forward to it,” said Narissa Garbusjuk, who helps run Boehms Candies. “I’ve been to it for at least the last 15-plus years. It’s quite the production that goes on.”

Besides hosting the festival, the confectionary also produces about 15 to 20 pounds of candy and chocolate for sampling, and offers free tours of the edelweiss chalet where founder Julius Boehm once lived, the candy factory and the chapel, a replica of a 12th century Swiss chapel complete with a recreation of Michelangelo’s “Creation of Man.”

“It’s pretty exciting because we still find that there are a lot of new people that come to this event that have never been down to this part of Gilman Boulevard,” Garbusjuk said.

The factory’s hand dippers plan to stay late July 26 so people can see them hand dip chocolates.

“We have a lot of history here and we take a lot of pride in keeping up our grounds and making it an experience,” Garbusjuk said. “The most joy that we get is seeing people enjoy the event, Boehms and the grounds.”

Lillian Tucker: 392-6434, ext. 242, or ltucker@sammamishreview.com. Comment at www.issaquahpress.com.

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