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Grand Jury profiles – Canadian National Competition 2014

Martin Christy

Permanent memberSeventy% (United Kingdom)

Judging Director

Martin Christy is Founder and Editor of fine chocolate review website Seventy%. Martin is a leading voice in the fine chocolate industry, passionate about the promotion and preservation of fine chocolate and fine cacao and supporting those who produce them.

Having grown up eating traditional British ‘candy’ type confectionery products, Martin discovered real chocolate in the early 1990s, in line with his interest in finer, healthier food and its sources. A growing obsession with the origin and variety of fine chocolate led him to found Seventy% to raise awareness of the quality and sourcing of the chocolate we eat, and to help create a movement to rediscover chocolate as a complex, ancient, beneficial and spiritual food. Seventy% now features over 600 reviews of chocolate bars from around the world and hosts an international panel of reviewers.

Since founding Seventy% in 2001, Martin has travelled extensively, visiting cacao plantations and meeting with the world’s top cacao and chocolate producers. Martin also runs Seventy%’s ‘Slow Chocolate’ sensory taste workshops and tasting events and is a consultant to the fine chocolate and cacao growing industries worldwide.

Martin is Judging Director of the International Chocolate Awards, which he founded in the UK with Kate Johns of Chocolate Week. He is also Acting Chairman of the new fine cacao and chocolate industry association, Direct Cacao and is a member of the Heirloom Cacao Preservation Initiative Tasting Panel and is a panel member of the Cocoa of Excellence competition.

Martin is also a freelance writer for UK magazines and web publications, and has contributed to several books about fine chocolate.


Sid Cross

Guest Grand JurorWine & Food Media (Canada)

Sid Cross writes for several publications and is a frequent wine and food judge, panellist and educator on both wine and food. He is the Honorary President globally for The International Wine & Food Society, a co-founder and advisor to The Chefs’ Table Society of British Columbia and a culinary judge at the Olympic Gold Medal Plates, the Canadian Culinary Championships as well as the Iron Chef competition at Whistler’s Cornucopia

Sid is the only Canadian to be inducted as a Membre d’Honneur of the L’Academie du vin de Bordeaux and also to be awarded The Gourmet of the Year by The Society of Bacchus America. He was instrumental in forming branches of existing wine and food societies in Vancouver including Confrerie des Chevaliers du Tastevin, Australian Wine Appreciation Society and La Commanderie de Bordeaux.


Jason McRobbie

Guest Grand JurorImaginationTHINK/creative consultant/writer/editor (Canada)

Jason McRobbie is a writer, editor and creative communications consultant whose focus on all things related to good food and people has been ongoing since 2000. Past editor of BC Restaurant News, his words have appeared in industry and mainstream publications including Alive Magazine, BC Chefs News, Edible Vancouver, Indulge, InnFocus and Vancouver Magazine, as well as the award-winning Chapeau Canada.

Above all else, he has served as a creative connector within the culinary community, and as a judge for Vancouver Magazine Restaurant Awards, BC Restaurant Hall of Fame and Healthy Chef Competition.


David Mincey

Guest Grand JurorPreservation Foods Chocolate Project (Canada)

Biography to follow shortly.


Pam Williams

Permanent memberTaster (United States)

Pam Williams founded Ecole Chocolat Professional School of Chocolate Arts in 2003 to deliver high quality educational opportunities both online and face-to-face to students all over the world. Now celebrating its 10th Anniversary, Ecole Chocolat offers a range of chocolate making programmes suitable for both beginners and those with experience who want to improve their knowledge and skills. Programmes include the Professional Chocolatier Programme, Chocolate Making from the Bean, Quality Assurance & Keeping Limits for Chocolatiers and Master Chocolatier and Chocolate Programmes. In Jan 2011, Pam received the Fine Chocolate Industry Association’s Recognition of Excellence in Service to the Industry.

In 2006 Pam created http://chocomap.com to celebrate the fine chocolate industry. Later in Spring 2011, she launched a free mobile app, Find Chocolate, using the chocomap global directory of over 2500 chocolate shops. The app has been a success with over 12000 downloads to date.


Eagranie Yuh

Guest Grand JurorThe Well-Tempered Chocolatier (Canada)

Eagranie Yuh is a writer, editor, and chocolate educator based in Vancouver, Canada. She is the author of the forthcoming Chocolate-Tasting Kit (Chronicle Books). You’ll find her work in Best Food Writing 2012, Edible VancouverThe Vancouver CourierTableMatters.com, and Flavours. Before becoming a professional writer, she was a chemist and a chocolatier. Learn more at thewelltemperedchocolatier.com.