Chicago, Illinois (February 25, 2014) – Over 850 Chicagoans looking to warm up their winter blues helped make things hot at the 9th Annual For the Love of Chocolate Gala on Saturday, February 22nd.  The event brought the twenties roaring back to life in the 130-year-old Union League Club of Chicago in the name of raising scholarships for students of The French Pastry School of Kennedy-King College at City Colleges of Chicago.

In the lobby alone, newsies hawked headlines, menacing gangsters and their carefree molls lined the marble staircase, a Madame bedecked guests for an old-fashioned photo booth, and a down-on-her-luck moonshiner from Redmoon Theater made bootleg gin in her bathtub

For some guests, the evening began with a four-course dinner presented by Chef Michael Garbin of the Union League Club featuring a menu that was inspired by the decadence of the jazz age.  After dinner, two groups of revelers converged into the Dessert Dance Parties that were putting on the Ritz on two different floors where they were treated to an indulgent evening of sampling sweets, savories, and swinging tunes until midnight.

Thanks to all of the attendees, participants, volunteers, and the incredible sponsors of For the Love of Chocolate, the foundation raised over $189,000; all proceeds from which will go to funding student scholarships for The French Pastry School’s L’Art de la Pâtisserie and L’Art du Gâteau programs.

“Chef Jacquy [Pfeiffer] and I created The French Pastry School to provide the pastry world with well-trained pastry professionals,” explained Chef Sébastien Canonne, M.O.F., Co-Founder and Academic Dean of The French Pastry School.  “We are honored to see so many people coming together to support the education of passionate individuals who may not otherwise be able to afford it.  This evening is the perfect example of how tightly-knit the food industry is; it is a great example for our students.”

A highlight of the evening was The Great Gâteau Cake Parade: over twenty local pastry businesses and a group of students from After School Matters designed cakes that evoked the Roaring Twenties.  Each featured art deco elements inspired by the architecture and fashion of the day: complete with lots of gilding, sunbursts, and pearls.

The foundation and gala could not exist without the many generous sponsors and donors that make these grants possible for future students of the pastry arts. The 10th Annual For the Love of Chocolate Gala, already in the planning process, will take place in February of 2015: keep current with details on next year’s amazing event and the work of the eponymous foundation by visiting and following them on Facebook and Twitter.

The next For the Love of Chocolate scholarships will be awarded to students who start L’Art de la Pâtisserie on July 9th and L’Art du Gâteau on September 2nd.  Stay tuned for news of the progress of the many scholarship recipients, students, and alumni of The French Pastry School here.

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