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A&E >  Food

Local chocolatiers win sweet awards

Two Spokane chocolatiers walked away from the Seattle Luxury Chocolate Salon with some tasty awards.

The fourth-annual salon – sponsored by TasteTV, an independent food television channel – features chocolate tastings and demonstrations, along with chef and author talks.

Salon judges also present regional “Best in Salon Awards” for chocolate makers who attend the show.

Spokane’s Halletts Handmade Chocolates was given 12 awards including gold awards for Most Delicious Ingredient Combination, Best Traditional Chocolates, Top Toffee in Salon and Best in Salon.

It also received silver awards for Top Artisan Chocolatier, Most Gifted Chocolate Maker and Best Comfort Chocolate Product.

DeVerne Augustus, owner and chocolate maker at The French Quarter in Spokane, also entered the salon. He says he shared some 5,000 samples of 15 different flavors during the public tasting.

He won seven silver awards for Best Truffle, Best Milk Chocolate, Top Artisan Chocolatier, Most Delicious Ingredient Combination, Best Flavored Chocolate, Best in Salon and Most Gifted Chocolatier, as well as a bronze award.

One of the judges said, “The French Quarter – they are one to watch.”

Halletts Handmade Chocolates are sold at the factory at 1419 E. Holyoke Ave. or 1003 E. Trent Ave. There is more information at

The French Quarter chocolates are sold at the store, 1311 W. Sprague Ave., or online at

Alumna news

Former Spokesman-Review colleague (and friend) Heather Lalley has had one busy spring.

In addition to graduating from culinary school at the Washburne Culinary Institute in Chicago and welcoming a new baby girl to her family, she’s also the proud mama to a bouncing baby cookbook.

“The Chicago Homegrown Cookbook” (Voyager Press, $30) features profiles of 29 chefs who work with that area’s farmers to feature locally grown, sustainable foods on their menus. The hardcover book is beautifully illustrated with scrumptious photos by Chicago native Brendan Lekan.

Lalley also writes about her adventures in baking (and making one-handed peanut butter sandwiches for her son, while rocking the babe) on her ChicagoNow blog, a site associated with the Chicago Tribune. Find it at

Find a recipe from the book, Sweet Apple Chicken Curry with Jasmine Rice, from Danielle Hrzic of Gourmet Gorilla on this page.

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