Chef turned restaurateur Alain Ducasse has rather a lot to say on the subject of chocolate.
On the website of Le Manufacture, the small-batch chocolate factory he founded in a former Renault Garage, he waxes poetic, sharing wide-eyed childhood memories of the “terribly sensual and bewitching substance.”
He’s a bit more mercenary in the pages of the The Wall Street Journal and Harvard Business Review, noting that the chocolate operation grew out of his desire to control the process from cacao beans to dessert plates in his numerous fine dining establishments.
His involvement in the day-to-day operations is likely ceremonial, but in a chocolate making stint early in his career, he found the “olfactory universe” pleasurable and “intoxicating to the point of being disturbing.”
Take that, Hersheys!
His fondness for vintage machinery and traditional methods opens the door to some serious cacao porn, above, starring former executive pastry chef Nicolas Berger.
The word “meticulous” comes up more than once in the voiceover narration. Hopefully, Saturday Night Live will take note. Tasked by Epicurious to identify a guilty pleasure on the order of chocolate or wine, Ducasse named BLT sandwiches, but he musters the requisite, parody-worthy romanticism for director Simon Pénochet:
Beyond gourmandise, we are seeking truth, a quest which is more primal than original.