Lubbock chocolatiers strut their stuff at Chocolate Fantasia - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Lubbock chocolatiers strut their stuff at Chocolate Fantasia


Chocolate lovers and wine connoisseurs had a great time at this year's 16th annual Wine & Chocolate Fantasia.    

The sold-out event was held at Llano Estacado Winery Saturday evening. It attracted 400 people all looking for to enjoy some chocolate while benefiting a good cause.

They enjoyed wine, live music and got to see and taste some crazy chocolate creations.

Lubbock chocolatiers gathered to compete for the titles "Imagination to Creation," "Artistic Merit," "Best of Show," and "People's choice."

Mike Laughlin is the tasting room manager at the winery. He says the sculptures surprise him each year.

"Some of them apparently work on this for months and months at a time. Some try to see if they can do something that's currently on topic or something's that's really popular right now," Laughlin said.

Thirty-two contestants brought everything they had to the table, all trying to win over the judges - including celebrity guest judge Vic Vegas.

"They were nice enough to make something big, grand and beautiful and they had little tasters of little morsels that they made. So we got a little taste of that, and that pretty much tells you the chocolate that they're using," Vic said.

Vic was a finalist on Food Network Star and has won the Food Network Challenge. He was a guest judge last year and said he could not wait to come back.

"There were people that I've even give bronze medals to and they were so proud, so happy that they won something and that they're good at something and that they're a part of something. What we try to do is motivate them and get them ready for next year," Vic said.

Raymie Fuentes, 19, is a first-year contestant. He said he put about 20 hours into his Tom and Jerry creation.

"I'm pretty excited. It's my first year so I thought a bronze was more than good," Fuentes said.

Fuentes' mom was speechless when Vic handed her son a bronze medal. She said she could not be happier for her little boy.

"A bronze for his first year, 19 years old, to me that tells me he's amazing already," Fuentes' mother said.  

Most of the proceeds went to benefit the West Texas Parkinsonism Society and to finance a scholarship for West Texas chefs.


Artistic Merit: Alison R Alba with the Overton Hotel (Cowboy)

Imagination to Creativity: Gyna Cole and Kendra San Juan with Art de' Cuisine & The Vine (Welcome Home Kliff Kingsbury)

Best of Show: Jennifer Shannon with Cakes by Sugar Plum (Keep Calm and Wine On)

People's Choice: Gyna Cole and Kendra San Juan with Art de' Cuisine & The Vine (Welcome Home Kliff Kingsbury)

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