The Elm In Williamsburg Is Closing

The Elm in Williamsburg has been open for nearly three years and unfortunately will be officially closing this coming Sunday. When the restaurant originally opened in August 2013 inside the King & Grove Williamsburg hotel, chef Paul Liebrandt believed the restaurant would serve as a ‘gateway’ for a clientele dissimilar to that of Corton.

The food and coffee at The Elm were highly praised including a three star rating from Adam Platt, however there was something about the atmosphere that never really jived. Chef Paul Liebrandt has mentioned that he would like to undertake another fine-dining restaurant project, so perhaps this may be the push to do so. For more information on the closing of The Elm in Williamsburg, click here.

Chocolate Will Cost More This V-Day

Cocoa prices increased significantly in the past year which will make this year’s Valentine’s Day chocolate gifts that much pricier. There has been in increase in demand for darker chocolates (mainly in Asian markets) which require more cocoa that could explain the cause of the spike in the commodity. Edward George, head of soft commodities research at EcoBank states,“What’s driving up the price, really, is rising demand for cocoa in Asia, though it also was pretty strong in North America and Europe.”

Environmental factors could also have been another factor affecting the rise; a dusty wind known as the harmattan began to sweep the big players in cocoa production this December (mostly West African countries) right at the beginning of the prime harvesting season. Many of the cocoa trees were also attacked by fungi that contributed to the decrease in production. Hershey’s has raised prices across all its products this year to offset the high cocoa prices. Sylvia Kälin, head of Lindt & Sprüngli’s corporate communications states,”L&S, like other companies in the chocolate industry, had to make occasional price adjustments on selected products in 2014 to absorb some of the raw material cost challenges — even if at first we always try to counter these challenges with increases in efficiency and volume.”

To read more about the rising cost of chocolate, click here, and on that note, Happy Valentine’s Day from TPG!