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Chemistry of Chocolate

October 28, 2014 @ 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm


Tourists marvel at it, but Chicagoans just smile.  In the north Loop at certain times of the day, if the wind blows just right, the air fills with the delicious, delightful aroma of chocolate.  It’s not magic, it’s simply Blommer Chocolate Company’s production line briefly brightening everyone’s mood.

Whether you consider it a daily necessity, an indulgence or your drug of choice, chocolate is a marvel.  You love it.  But to fully appreciate it you should understand its amazing chemical properties. Here is your rare chance to learn more about your beloved sweet treat.

  •  How is chocolate actually made?
  •  What’s the real distinction between dark and milk chocolate?  And what’s up with “white” chocolate?
  •  Why does it sometimes turn a grayish color?
  •  What’s the role of emulsifiers and incompatible fats?
  •  What are the findings of all those health studies done on chocolate?

Illinois Science Council is partnering with the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum to offer one of our most popular programs about the chemistry of things we care about (and perhaps keep a stash in a our desk drawer).  This unique workshop on the Chemistry of Chocolate will be led by Dr. Shelby Hatch, chemistry faculty at Northwestern University, and Melissa Tisoncik, R&D Specialist with Blommer Chocolate Company. You’ll do hands-on experiments with chocolate-y goodness and there will definitely be tasting opportunities. Plus, there will be a trivia quiz with prizes!

Tickets are $40 which includes admission to the Museum and all Nature on Tap activities and exhibits, one drink (beer) ticket, plus chocolate tastings! ! Food and craft beers (HalfAcre* beer will be featured) will be available for purchase from 6-9:30pm, the Butterfly Haven will be open until 9pm. * Maurizio Fiore from Half Acre will be available early in the evening to chat with folks about the beer. 

No science prerequisites necessary but you must be 21 or older. (You could have flunked high school chemistry and will still love our “class”!)  Sign up now — space is very limited.  Register HERE.

Past ISC programs in this series have included the chemistry of beer, whiskey, chocolate and cosmetics. Visit IllinoisScience.org for more details. Chemistry of Honey is happening Tuesday, Sept. 30th; check here for ticket availability.


October 28, 2014
6:30 pm - 8:00 pm


Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum
2430 N. Cannon Drive
Chicago, IL 60614 United States
+ Google Map
(773) 755-5100


Illinois Science Council