2015 Schedule of Demonstrations

  • Master Chocolatier Baruch "Bernie" Schaked

    Award-Winning Chocolatier

    Sunday April 19th at 1:00 pm

    Baruch Schaked will make his famous rendition of the Mayan Chocolate Drink for guests to try while he opens real cacao pods flown from Puerto Rico to taste, touch and smell. A must for any chocolate aficionado. Mr. Schaked will also be available to sign his "Viva Chocolate" book he wrote in celebration of his love for chocolate. Mr. Schaked also founded Schakolad Chocolate Factory with 24 stores around the US and Chocolate Kingdom an Interactive Bean to the Bar Chocolate Adventure Tour in Orlando.

  • Executive Chef Veejoruth Purmessur

    Sunday April 19th at 4:00 pm

    Chef P, Executive Chef of Innocent Chocolate, will demonstrate the perfect technique for tempering chocolate by hand.

    Read Chef Purmessur's Bio
  • Pastry Chef Sinai Grove

    Saturday April 18th at 2:00 pm
    Sunday April 19th at 2:00 pm

    Chef Grove, Pastry Chef at the Tampa Marriott Waterside Hotel & Marina, will showcase her hotel`s Signature Chocolate Irish Car Bomb Plated Dessert. Be prepared to taste her amazing creations.

    Read Chef Grove's Bio
  • Pastry Chef Jacquie DiPego

    Saturday April 18th at 4:00 pm
    Sunday April 19th at 3:00 pm

    Jacquie DiPego, Pastry Chef at Sand Pearl Resort and Spa, will showcase her hotel`s newest menu creation - an Artisan Chocolate Bread Roll infused with Jalapeno Peppers .

    Read Chef DiPego's Bio
  • Pastry Chef Alon Gontowski

    Saturday April 18th at 3:00 pm

    Chef Alon Gontowski, Pastry Chef of the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, will showcase the hotel`s signature dessert - Chocolate Cremuex with Peanut Butter Crunch and Crispy Tulie.

    Read Chef Gontowski's Bio
  • Pastry Chef Jovana Unietis

    Saturday April 18th at 12:00 pm

    Chef Unietis, Owner and Pastry Chef of the Artistic Whisk, will showcase one of her favorite artistic creation - Peanut Brittle made from scratch and then used to decorate a Signature Mousse Cake.

    Read Chef Unietis's Bio

Saturday April 18th, 2015

  • 11:00 am - MythMelters - The Science of Melted Chocolate by STEAMpunks of MOSI (45 minutes)
  • 12:00 pm - Creating the Perfect Peanut Brittle to decorate a Signature Mousse Cake by Jovana Unietis, Pastry Chef and Owner of The Artistic Whisk (45 minutes)
  • 1:00 pm - Chocolate 101: How to Properly Taste by Stephanie Weinberger, Chocolatier at Dove Chocolate Discoveries (45 minutes)
  • 2:00 pm - Signature Chocolate Irish Car Bomb Plated Dessert by Sinai Grove, Pastry Chef Tampa Marriott Waterside Hotel & Marina (45 minutes)
  • 3:00 pm - Hard Rock Hotel`s Signature Dessert - Chocolate Cremuex with Peanut Butter Crunch and Crispy Tulie by Alon Gontowski, Pastry Chef at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino (45 minutes)
  • 4:00 pm - The Makings of an Artisan Chocolate Bread Roll infused with Jalapeno Peppers by Jacquie DiPego, Pastry Chef at Sand Pearl Resort and Spa (45 minutes)

Sunday April 19th, 2015

  • 11:00 am - MythMelters - The Science of Melted Chocolate by STEAMpunks of MOSI (45 minutes)
  • 12:00 pm - Chocolate 101: How to Properly Taste Chocolate by Stephanie Weinberger, Chocolateier at Dove Chocolate Discoveries (45 minutes)
  • 1:00 pm - Tasting of a Mexican Chocolate Drink (using old world methods) and Taste, Touch and Smell - Cacao Pod and Beans by Bernie Schaked, Founder of Chocolate Kingdom in Kissimmee, FL (45 minutes)
  • 2:00 pm - Signature Chocolate Irish Car Bomb Plated Dessert by Sinai Grove, Pastry Chef Tampa Marriott Waterside Hotel & Marina (45 minutes)
  • 3:00 pm - The Makings of an Artisan Chocolate Bread Roll infused with Jalapeno Peppers by Jacquie DiPego, Pastry Chef at Sand Pearl Resort and Spa (45 minutes)
  • 4:00 pm - Using Perfect Technique for Tempering Chocolate by Hand by Veejoruth Purmessur, Executive Chef at Innocent Chocolate (45 minutes)

* Demos and Times are Subject to Change

Master Chocolatier Baruch "Bernie" Schaked

Baruch Schaked, has been a chocolate maker since 1969. He began his career as a chocolatier in Argentina while working for his father-in-law, Gustavo Bar, who was the owner of one of South America’s largest chocolate factories. Mr. Schaked traveled extensively throughout Europe to participate in courses and seminars at prestigious schools where he mastered the art of chocolate making. His education and passion paid off in the form of numerous first place awards for his scrumptious, handmade truffles at the world-renown Fontainebleau Chocolate Festival. And, that is just the beginning of the story. The Schaked`s chocolate adventure really got started when Baruch Schaked announced that he was selling his chocolate shop in South Florida in order to retire. His son, Edgar, determined to keep the family’s passion alive, scrapped his engineering career to continue the family legacy. In 1995, the first Schakolad Chocolate Factory opened in Winter Park, Florida. In 1999, Schakolad began franchising their unique system, creating national and international awareness as the producers of fine quality chocolates using only the highest quality ingredients.

Baruch Schaked began writing “Viva Chocolate” as an educational Chocolate Information manual for his stores -- a sort of Master Chocolatier’s pocket guide to the art of chocolate from the bean to the bar. What he soon realized was that although the general public is inundated with books on chocolate recipes and preparation, they too wanted a simple, yet detailed overview of the pure chocolate making process. After multiple speaking engagements covering this topic, he decided to address the public’s thirst for knowledge in his widely acclaimed comprehensive chocolate guidebook…“Viva Chocolate.”

Pastry Chef Sinai Grove

Sinai Grove is the Pastry Chef at the Tampa Waterside Marriott, where her diverse talents, creativity and passion for all things pastry are on display throughout the hotel`s restaurants and catered events. An Honors Society and President`s List graduate of Le Cordon Bleu, Chef Sinai was a leader on Disney`s Swan & Dolphin culinary team and then Pastry Chef at Sweet Tweets Cakery before settling in to her current leadership role at the Waterside Marriott.

Among her accomplishments, she has received certification through the Notter School of Pastry Arts, and she was winner of the wedding cake decorating competition at the Orlando Chocolate Festival in 2011. Most recently, Chef Sinai lead her team to win a total of five ribbons at the Tampa Chocolate Festival in 2012, including two 1st Place medals for Live Wedding Cake Decorating Competition and Best Chocolate Cake.

Pastry Chef Alon Gontowski

Alon Gontowski is the pastry chef at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Tampa. He has been in this position for eight years.

Gontowski possesses more than 20 years in the pastry industry. Prior to his Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino appointment, he was a pastry chef at Mohegan Sun Casino in Uncasville, Connecticut. He developed and executed the menu selections for 29 restaurants, including Todd English`s Tuscany and Michael Jordan`s Steak House.

In 2012 his creativity and flare for pastries won him the title of "Sweet Genius" on the Food Network hosted by Ron Ben Israel.

He has been awarded with a silver medal in the American Culinary Federation Pastry Competition. He also helped create the world`s largest wedding cake, weighing 15,032 lbs. (Guinness World Book of Records, 2005).

Gontowski`s experience has taken him all over the United States, where he has held various pastry chef positions at Hilton Hotel & Casino (Reno, Nevada), Four Seasons Hotel (San Francisco), Caesar`s Hotel & Casino (Atlantic City, New Jersey) and the following restaurants in Las Vegas: JW Marriott Spa & Resort and Desert Inn Hotel & Casino.

In addition, he served as executive pastry chef at Harrah`s Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, creating deserts for eight restaurants, training team members and controlling labor and food costs. He was also awarded the Leader of the Quarter.

He graduated with an associate of science degree from Johnson & Wales University in Providence, Rhode Island.

Pastry Chef Jacquie DiPego

Chef Jacquie DiPego is the Pastry Chef at Ocean Properties Sand Pearl Resort and Spa in Clearwater Beach, Florida, since January, 2011. A Alpha Beta Kappa graduate of the Cooking & Hospitality Institute of Chicago. Owned and operated Giramond World Patisserie in Lemont, Illinois, where she created pastries from around the world, fresh-baked breads & special event cakes. She was the volunteer Chef and Board member of LaSalle Street Senior Center in Chicago, while she worked closely with the Avellino Group in Chicago. Providing solutions for patients with sugar & gluten sensitivities, along with preparing demonstrations & classes. Jacquie enjoys the daily challenges of seasonally changing menus, monthly wine dinners, while maintaining a rigorous from scratch pastry department of a 4 Star Diamond Resort.

Pastry Chef Jovana Unietis

Jovana graduated with honors and a degree in Patisserie and Baking from Le Cordon Bleu in Orlando, Florida. In the past several years she has worked for some of the most talented pastry chefs at some of the most prestigious resorts in the surrounding areas, including; downtown Tampa`s Marriott Waterside, The Sandpearl Resort on Clearwater Beach, the 5 Star 5 Diamond Ritz Carlton Beach Resort in Naples, and most recently held the position of Executive Pastry Chef at Innisbrook Golf and Spa Resort in Palm Harbor.

While in school, she knew her attention to detail, patience, and artistic eye would lead her to the niche of cake decorating. However, Jovana knew she wanted to become an all-around pastry chef first, with knowledge of all things pastry to enhance her creative abilities. She believes that the information she has gained over the years contributes to her desire to use only high quality, natural ingredients, a high level of professionalism and leadership, and the skills necessary to create artistically beautiful cakes that not only look fantastic, but taste incredible.

Executive Chef Veejoruth Purmessur

Chef Veejoruth Purmessur has enjoyed a long, successful career in pastry arts. A native of the East Indian island of Mauritius, Chef Purmessur has served up his inspired creations to global audiences. He has lived and worked in many countries including the United States, Jamaica, the Bahamas, Mexico, New Caledonia and the Dominican Republic.

As a young man in Mauritius he was bitten by the pastry bug when he worked at a part time baking job he held while attending hotel and catering school. Fresh from his studies, he took over the bakery at the Saint Geran hotel in Mauritus. Recognizing the need to further his culinary education he set out for the culinary university in France. Upon completion of his studies he moved to Turks and Caicos where he spent three years as a pastry sous chef.

After this he was employed by Sandals Resorts, Parrot Cay and Club Med for several years. After a brief detour back to Mauritius, during which he obtained the Assistant Pastry Chef position at the prestigious Victoria Hotel, he returned to Sandals Resorts International as Executive Pastry Chef at the Beaches Turks & Caicos Resort Villages & Spa where he continued to perfect his art over the next five years.

He served long stints at Beaches Negril Resort & Spa and Sandals Whitehouse European Village & Spa. Chef Purmessur received specialty instruction in fine pastry, chocolate and sugar works at the uber-esteemed Edward Notter School and this prepared him for a role as Group Pastry Chef for Sandals Resorts International. With seemingly limitless energy - his peers call him Ninja - Chef Purmessur was constantly on the move, overseeing pastry departments at 20 hotels in five different countries, and training and developing his staff of nearly 200 aspiring young pastry chefs.

Chef Purmessur`s culinary innovations have earned him several awards throughout his career, among them the Le Saint Geran World Award for Outstanding Achievement, and Bronze and Silver medals in the pastry competition at Taste of the Caribbean held annually in Miami. In June 2011 Chef Purmessur represented Jamaica in that year`s competition. He won a gold medal and Hansschank Commemorative award for most innovative menu.

He soon moved on to the United States where he was employed at the Concord Hotel Devon Tower in Oklahoma City. Not content to remain put he left Oklahoma and took up the position as Executive Chef at the Coconut Bay Beach Resort and Spa in St Lucia from July 2013 until now. As the Executive chef, he manages over 60 kitchen and stewarding staff catering to four specialty restaurants that serve Asian, Caribbean, Italian and international fare as well as a beach grill.

Affectionately known as Chef P at Coconut Bay he also is integral in overseeing the purchase of products from international markets as well as ensuring that the produce grown locally for use in the hotel is of a high quality. He follows the current trends in Caribbean and French cuisine and infuses his own unique twists to ensure wonderful fusions.

Chef P is perfectly placed to put into use his years of training and experience as a baker, chocolatier and pastry chef in his present position at Coconut Bay to enhance the offerings at the various restaurants and at special functions.

Chef P has had extensive experience working with celebrity wedding gurus such as Martha Stewart wedding concepts, Wendy Cromer and Sylvia Winestock. He insists that working with his chefs to improve their skills and ability is the secret of success.