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Chicago Chef Is Chocolate Champ

By Laura Oppenheimer in Food on Oct 16, 2006 5:40PM

Alain Roby, pastry chef at the Hyatt Regency Chicago, set the world record for tallest chocolate structure last week in New York when he created a 20-foot, 8-inch tall replica of the Rockefeller Center, the Empire State Building and the Chrysler Building. Roby was in NY as part of the "Food Network Challenge," which also saw challenges for best pizza dough tossing and popcorn sculpting. Chicagoist didn’t know there were that many people who practiced the ancient art of popcorn sculpting, but apparently there are enough to fill an hour-long "Food Network Challenge."

But back to Roby’s chocolate tower. The sculpture is made of dark chocolate with white chocolate windows and weighs over 1000 kg. For those of you who aren’t up to date on your kilogram-to-pounds conversion, Roby’s chocolate creation weighed in at roughly 2205 lbs, or one ton. For comparison’s sake, a small rhinoceros weighs about the same amount.

The next challenge for Roby will be transporting the decadent creation back to Chicago for display at the Hyatt. The Food Network, meanwhile, will be promoting their other Guinness record-breaking Challenges. "Food Network Challenge" host Keegan Gerhard said that there is still one record he would like to see broken: most sugar-glazed jelly donuts consumed in three minutes without licking lips. "It's harder than you think," said Gerhard, in a press release. "I tried and failed. I could only do it with my own donuts." That sounds like a challenge to us.