Bug Fair tickets for May 18 are now sold out. Tickets for May 19 are still available.

Chocolate Talk & Tasting

Thursday, May 30, 2024 | 6–8 pm
Add to calendar 2024-05-30 18:00:00 2024-05-30 20:00:00 Chocolate Talk & Tasting | Thursday, May 30, 2024 Natural History Museum nhmla webmaster@nhm.org America/Los_Angeles public
Square milk chocolates shot from above


Thursday, May 30, 2024 | 6–8 pm

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Natural History Museum
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$20 General Admission
$18 Members

Chocolate Talk & Tasting | The Chocolate Cure

Join us at NHM as we dive into the world of chocolate. Meet chocolatiers featured in the digital series, Chocolate: From Beans to Bliss, as they share stories about their journey to chocolate and their connections to family, health, and resilience. Best of all, enjoy a chocolate tasting from each featured speaker’s shop as part of the evening experience.

Chocolate has often been seen as a source of comfort and recovery for many and for others a symbol of resilience. On May 30, we explore the personal chocolate journey of Albert Daniel of Albert’s Petite Sweets and SueEllen Mancini, owner of Sad Girl Creamery. Moderated by Milena Acosta, Associate Director of Community Engagement at NHM and content producer for the Being Los Angeles initiative and ChocoLAte: From Beans to Bliss project.

Each guest will receive a chocolate tasting from Sad Girl Creamery and Albert’s Petite Sweets with admission. Select first-floor exhibitions will be on view before and after the conversation. Space is limited. 

6 pm: Doors open
6:30 pm:  Discussion begins
7:30 pm: Discussion end, reception
8 pm: Program concludes

 SueEllen Mancini holding a pint of ice cream

SueEllen Mancini, Owner, Sad Girl Creamery
Sad Girl Creamery was started by SueEllen Mancini back in January of 2021. She now runs the business together with her mother. Sad Girl’s ice cream flavors focus on recreating classic Latin desserts into creamy frozen deliciousness using Latin ingredients. Sue uses her own personal nostalgic memories of desserts and flavors she grew up enjoying into her creations. She also draws inspiration from other Latin cultures to create a menu that is representative of everyone in the community. The name Sad Girl comes from her using her social media platforms to share mental health awareness by telling her own experiences and sharing her journey of managing her bipolar disorder. One of Sad Girl’s missions, on top of delicious ice cream, is trying to embrace the importance of mental health within Latin communities. 

Head and shoulders portrait of Albert Daniel in white chef's jacket

Albert Daniel, Owner and Creator of Albert’s Petite Sweets 
Albert’s culinary journey began 10 years ago when he taught himself to make cake pops to share with family and friends. He discovered a passion for creating unique treats with the power to delight. Per Albert, “It’s not just a treat, it’s an experience!” It wasn’t easy; there were times when he lost it all. At one point, Albert almost became homeless, and many people said he wouldn’t make it. Against all odds, he fought to turn his dreams into a reality. Today, Albert has expanded his line of desserts, evolving into what he’s always wanted: a chocolatier and confectioner. Being self-taught, he successfully competed on Hulu’s Baker’s Dozen and won first place. Two years after the show, Albert opened his first commercial chocolate shop and kitchen at Partake Collective in Downtown Long Beach, California, living out his life’s calling.

Milena Acosta 2023

Milena Acosta, Associate Director of Community Engagement
Milena Acosta is a marine biologist and science communicator with over 20 years of experience working in out-of-school learning institutions.  In her current role as Associate Director of Community Engagement, she fosters relationships with community-based organizations and implements a comprehensive engagement strategy for creating community partnerships and programs in Los Angeles County. She oversees several collaborative programs and works with staff and community stakeholders to ensure inclusive and authentic partnerships are aligned with the Museum’s mission and neighborhood aspirations.  Milena oversees the content for the Being Los Angeles initiative and produces the ChocoLAte: From Beans to Bliss project. 

Waffle-like tacos with chocolate and nuts inside
Caramel in a bowl from above
Caramel in tear-shaped molds
Turquoise and brown tear-drop shaped chocolates shot from above

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