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2013 Chocolates Galore & More!

Thursday, February 21st, 2013

Last Friday evening at NCC was every epicureans dream. Hundreds of guests gathered for the biggest and most delicious celebration of the year, YMCA Loudoun County Chocolates Galore & More! Since its inception 26 years ago, the event has helped to garner funds that enable YMCA to serve the needs of local families and children throughout Loudoun County. Guests were in for a real treat, as they enjoyed live music from Katz Band, dancing, free-flowing champagne, a silent & live auction and a chance to sample desserts and gourmet foods in the Hors D ‘Oeuvres Competition featuring the finest restaurants and caterers in the area. Judges included culinary enthusiasts, Kimberly Van (Yelp NoVA), John Andrews (YMCA Board Member), Danielle Turner (chef & food writer/stylist) and Rebekah Pizana (pastry chef & food writer). NCC was ecstatic to win Best Presentation for Hors D’Oeuvre in both the Critics’ Choice and People’s Choice categories for Executive Chef Mason and team’s delectable concoction: smoking maple Bourbon cola topped with salted caramel and chocolate applewood smoked bacon.

Congrats to our team here at NCC and to all the winners of this year’s Chocolates Galore & More!



Best Taste Dessert – Bungalow Lake House

Best Presentation Dessert – Market Salamander

Best Taste Hors D’Oeurvre – Hooked

Best Presentation Hors D’Oeurvre – National Conference Center



Best Taste Dessert – Sweetz Bakery

Best Presentation Dessert – Simply Cakes by Alison

Best Taste Hors D’Oeuvre – Hooked

Best Presentation Hors D’Oeuvre – National Conference Center


Special thanks to Dawn Dinius and Tom Barry for the fabulous photos! Check out more photos and videos on Facebook.


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Photo credit: Tom Barry


Photo credit: Dawn Dove Dinius — NCC’s Smoking Mirrors Theme


Photo credit: Dawn Dove Dinius


Photo credit: Dawn Dove Dinius


Photo credit: Dawn Dove Dinius


Photo credit: Dawn Dove Dinius


Photo credit: Dawn Dove Dinius — NCC team accepting the first award of the evening!


Photo credit: Dawn Dove Dinius


5 Special Events We Think You’ll Rave About

Friday, February 18th, 2011

Photo Credit: IACC Online – Copper Skillet Competition

For West Belmont Place who plans all business functions, galas, weddings and more at The National Conference Center, there are several upcoming special events that are open to the public and something we believe are worth attending – all designed for different audiences and ages. See what you think, we’re convinced you’ll be raving about it:

  • Chocolates Galore – The 23rd annual Chocolates Galore & More will be held tonight (Friday, February 18th) at NCC and is event for friends, couples, and families. It’s a showcase of desserts, hors d’oeuvres, and Champagne from a host of Northern Virginia restaurants and purveyors. Patowmack Farm, Vintage 50, Sweetz Bakery, and more will provide food. There will be live music, dancing, silent and live auctions, and competitions for the best desserts and hors d’oeuvres. CELEBRITY JUDGES include TOP CHEF Mike Isabella, Charlie Adler of TasteDC, and Rebekah Pizana of Gourmet Amore. All proceeds from the tickets ($70 for reserved seats or at the door; $60 general admission) go to the Loudoun County YMCA. Visit the Web site for reservations and more information.

  • Hunt Country Bridal Show & Expo - For engaged couples, Hunt Country Celebrations Bridal and Special Event Expo will be held on Sunday, March 20 from noon to 4 p.m. at West Belmont Place at NCC.  Admission is free.  The popular event returns this year with more vendors and expanded exhibits including carriage companies, musicians, florists, representatives from top event sites, caterers and others who help to create beautiful, elegant weddings throughout the Washington, D.C. region including Virginia hunt country. Brides may pre-register to enter the drawing for $200 toward any vendor or receive a $25 discount on any service from any vendor for services booked at the Expo. Visit the registration website for  more information.

  • Corporate Spelling Bee - The Loudoun Literacy Council is hosting their 5th Annual Corporate Spelling Bee at The National Conference Center March 28, 2011. The event allows businesses to compete as a corporate team in a round-robin fast paced Spelling Bee.  Each corporation buys their way in – 3 individuals can compete as spellers on a team. Celebrity judges include Sentator Herring of the great state of Virginia. All proceeds benefit the Loudoun Literacy Council who teach reading and writing skills to children and adults at or belowthe poverty level.  For more information about entering your company, visit the Loudoun Literacy website.

  • “Meet & Greet” IACC - If you’re a meeting or event planner and have an interest in food and meetings, this is an NCC event you won’t want to miss! All meeting planners and event professionals are invited to a “Meeting & Eating” session, where Andrea Sullivan a well-known brain psychologist will discuss menu choices for enhancing mood, learning and performance in meetings. Tickets include admission to her keynote speech, access to the round table discussion from industry experts, seats at the 2011 Copper Skillet Competition, the Taste of IACC, and gift bags. Interested in attending? Find out more on the IACC website.

  • American Girls Fashion Show – Have children who have grown up with The American Girl dolls? Attend the American Girls Fashion Show at NCC, Saturday, March 26th or Sunday, March 27th. The show expects a 1600+ turnout for the entire weekend. Purchase your tickets today as it’s been sold out in the past! All proceeds go to the Blue Ridge Speech and Hearing Center in Lansdowne, VA which helps young children who are hearing impaired. Visit the website for more information.

The PERFECT Last Minute Gift for People Who LOVE Events!

Tuesday, December 21st, 2010

What’s the perfect last minute gift for the Holidays? Well, if you enjoy endless champagne, chocolate, Bravo’s “Top Chef,” and good food then we’ve found the perfect gift (and evening!) for you and your girlfriends, significant other, or family.

Chocolates Galore and More 2011

  • Guest Judges – Who would miss the chance to be graced with the presence of these judges? Mike Isabella & Rebekah Pizana are confirmed as guest judges at this year’s event. Mike Isabella, a former Top Chef star, has received national attention for his work as Executive Chef at Zaytinya, Washington, DC’s Mediterranean powerhouse restaurant. Rebekah Pizana, a professional pastry chef, is the owner of Gourmet Amore and a travel food writer. It’s an honor to have Mike & Isabella judging this year’s event!

  • Delicious Food from Award-Winning restaurants and vendors – The biggest name in attending vendors is Dove Chocolate Discoveries. Would you miss an event Dove Chocolates is at?  Don’t miss items from Market Salamander, Sweetz Bakery, The Goodstone Inn & Estate, Very Virginia, The Pink Shop, and Vintage 50 – just to name a few. Most taste their food and continue coming back for more!

  • Silent & Live auctions – Chocolates Galore is auctioning unique experiences, like a flight on a fighter pilot plane, sports memorabilia and hand signed pictures/items. As just one of many experiences at Chocolates Galore, who could say no to this?

  • Endless Champagne and Chocolate – Need we say more? We were convinced at the first line.

  • Support a Cause – And most importantly, this is a philanthropic event! Hosted by the YMCA in Loudoun County, all proceeds go back to The Building Bridges Program, which helps the needs of children and families who need assistance. Take pleasure in knowing your attendance at the event helps children in need.

23rd Annual Chocolates Galore & More!

Friday, February 18, 2011

7:00 – 11:00 p.m.

West Belmont Place @ The National Conference Center