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Greenbrier chef creates chocolate wonderland

Reigister-Herald photo provided by The Greenbrier The elaborate chocolate holiday display in the lobby of The Greenbrier features 1,000 pounds of chocolate and took executive pastry chef Jean-Francois Suteau and his pastry team three months to complete.
Reigister-Herald photo provided by The Greenbrier
The elaborate chocolate holiday display in the lobby of The Greenbrier features 1,000 pounds of chocolate and took executive pastry chef Jean-Francois Suteau and his pastry team three months to complete.

BECKLEY, W.Va. — Beautifully decorated Christmas presents, a handsome nutcracker, Christmas trees, a few of Santa’s reindeer and an intricately carved sleigh instantly grab the attention of guests who pass through The Greenbrier lobby.

Upon closer inspection, however, it becomes clear that the gorgeous Christmas display is something a little more special and perhaps a little tastier.

The display, in fact, features 1,000 pounds of chocolate, designed and hand-built by The Greenbrier Executive Pastry Chef Jean-Francois Suteau with the assistance of two members of his pastry team.

It took the team nearly three months to construct the display, beginning with online research, template drawings and completion of a chocolate prototype.

Rather than building the display in the pastry shop, Suteau and his team worked in an air-conditioned storeroom to protect the chocolate from melting.

Transforming chocolate into a work of art involves a bit of science as the chocolate is sculpted, shaped, smoothed and even used as the glue…

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