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Title: Beer and Chocolate – Food of the Gods

Location: Peabody Essex Museum

Description: Take a delicious journey into the art, culture, and history of Maya chocolate beverages with Peabody Essex Museum (PEM) curator George Schwartz and locally-based Taza Chocolate co-founder Alex Whitmore at Beer + Chocolate = Food of the Gods on Thursday, July 8 at 6:30 p.m.

Known to the Maya as kakaw (cacao), the chocolate beverage was a cherished luxury good considered fit for the gods. Recent archaeological research has confirmed that a fermented chocolate “beer” preceded the non-alcoholic chocolate drinks of the New World. Chocolate continues to inspire brewers today.

Beer + Chocolate begins with a tour of Fiery Pool: The Maya and the Mythic Sea led by Schwartz. Following the tour is a presentation and tasting featuring beers such as Dogfish Head’s Theobroma and Southern Tier’s Choklat, along with Taza’s renowned stone-ground organic chocolate. Guests will also try their hand at creating a chocolate beverage in the style of the Maya, and enjoy Maya-inspired cuisine.

Schwartz and Whitmore will discuss the importance of cacao and chocolate beverages in the Maya world, linking the discussion to the watery themes of Fiery Pool, and revealing through imagery and demonstration how Maya beverages were made and continue to be made today. The event closes with a tasting of modern Taza chocolate and discussion of how it is inspired by ancient Maya and Mesoamerican cacao beverages.

Start Time: 6:30pm

Date: 2010-07-08

Members $75; Nonmembers $85

INFO: Call 866?745?1876 or visit our Web site at