Chocolate Gears & Chocolate Clocks, Chocolate Hearts & Glocky Fops ~ AnachroCon ’14, Atlanta, Georgia
Once a year, my family members and I don our steampunk finery and head south to attend AnachroCon, held in Atlanta, Georgia.
At this, the grandest steampunk con in the south, we generally find the expected contraptions, gadgets, and dandy duds worn by people who hail from all walks of life, but come together to share and socialize with like-minded modernists who pine for the flair and inventive spirit of times gone by.
Burlesque shows, of which my children do not attend, and late night astronomy lessons, which they do enjoy, are scheduled around lectures on Poe, mead making, Victorian dining etiquette…
…and if you’re lucky, absinthe tasting. This sampling of turn-of-the-century culture is offered along with any number of fabrication, costume design, and sewing courses.
There’s barely enough time each day to learn everything we want to learn during AnachroCon weekends while still having time to properly make the rounds of all the booksellers, music peddlers, and sci-fi and steampunk goods vendors that set up booths in every nook and cranny of the convention’s hosting venue.
But always, we find among my fellow Etsy shop owners and the freshly hatched authors waiting for interested parties to ask for an inscription with a book purchase, a small business that we decide we would like to support.
This year it was a chocolate vendor from Michigan, Sweet Steam, whose wares caught my husband’s eye and compelled him to make a purchase…two purchases.
I was so spurred by his generosity and curiosity, that I grabbed a third treat for my fitness partner. Raspberry chocolate hearts!
I know. Evil. I guess I figured that if I was spending a weekend bailing on our combined effort, galavanting all over Georgia at the convention and The Walking Dead film locations tour we took immediately after, that she should be allowed to splurge a little, too.
The chocolate gears my husband purchased to share with our little guy were mint flavored. I think they’d make great little, edible cogs for steampunk wedding favors, served alongside Sweet Steam’s chocolate mustaches. Wouldn’t that be fun?
The chocolate pocket watch , Clockwork Orange, impressed our older son, immensely.
I figured that because this cottage industry’s confections were awesome to look at with their edible industrial metallic sheen, and that was enough for me since we were at a steampunk con Valentine’s weekend, that they would be made from the cheap, waxy, durable American molding candies that are so common among “chocolatiers” these days. And I assumed that because I am spoiled for having access to French Broad’s bean-to-bar truffles and rich desserts, that looks were as far as Sweet Steam’s chocolates were going to go. But they were surprisingly creamy. Not too sweet. Had just enough flavor without tasting Easter basket-ish, if you know what I mean.
And considering the fact that we purchased them in February and didn’t get around to sampling them until months later, I think the longest chocolate has ever survived in this house, that’s saying a lot! They were exceedingly better than the very expensive, but corporate gift certificate purchased, box of truffles my husband brought home from a chain chocolate shop, whose name I will not mention due to a very important lesson I learned from a certain Disney bunny whose foot just wouldn’t sit still. Pretty to look at, but waxy, waxy, sickly sweet. No, thank you!
But would I be happy to make a Sweet Steam purchase at AnachroCon ’15? Yes, please!