Tag Archives: Spring break

Drinking chocolate from bowls

The first time I drank chocolate out of a bowl was in Calgary during Spring Break 1989. My friends and I traveled up in a rented car. The population back then was 700,000 and to us it was the Big City, as our university town in Montana was much smaller. I remember the Calgarians saying, “You came here for Spring Break?” Followed by, “Why aren’t you in Florida?” We had a lovely time, though, taking the light rail from the university to downtown, shopping, dining, and taking in the Canadian atmosphere. And it was cold. We didn’t care, though! We’d driven up over the Rocky Mountains, through Banff, and out onto the prairies and we were there to have fun and a well-needed break. It was during one of those frosty, early spring days that we ended up in a bohemian little cafe in the downtown core. We’d been looking, seeing, and enjoying all things downtown, were tired and needed to rest our dogs. We all ordered hot chocolate and, to our surprise, big steaming bowls of chocolate were placed on the table. It was so exotic to me! We cupped our cold hands around the warm ceramic bowls and sipped. It was sheer heaven… We were bathed in the rich aroma as we drank it down. It’s one thing to drink cocoa from a narrow mug and an altogether different experience to feel the steam waft around you and take in the scents from a wide bowl. Some time later, after I moved to Canada, I bought my husband a chocolate bowl for Valentine’s Day. It’s a lovely ceramic bowl…fluted, of white clay…decorated with a mosaic pattern on the outer rim. If it wasn’t for the French Canadian influence, I would probably have yet to have experienced such a lovely tradition. Bowls filled with steaming cocoa… It’s early spring, I just got back from Whistler where my friend took us to a lovely crêperie run by French Canadians, Crêpe Montagne. I had their mixed berry crêpe served with crème anglaise. Delightful! The village was full of students on Spring Break. Snowboarders, skiers…and this year there was plenty of snow, compared to last year during the Olympics. It all reminded me of the sojourn to Calgary many moons ago. So, I’m back home and am thinking of bowls of chocolate…

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