Fancy buying some bespoke chocolates for Valentines Day created by the likes of Jamie Oliver, Jose Pizarro, Eric Lanlard and Simon Rogan? And all in the name of a great cause? A group of top chefs and food writers, including restaurant critic Grace Dent, have come together to help disadvantaged young people into work - with a special auction in aid of Galvin's Chance.
What's it all about?
Fred Sirieix, GM of Michelin starred Galvin's at Windows, is behind the Chocs for Chance project, together with chef patron Chris Galvin. "We're very excited about it", he says "because so many talented and big names of our industry are getting together. It is a great way to create momentum and awareness so that we can raise the funds so badly needed for the charity." The special boxes of chocolates will be sold to the highest bidders in an online auction, which runs for 10 days from January 26th.
What can we buy?
There are some very special chocs on offer - using the finest couverture donated by Valrhona. Duck and Waffle's Dan Doherty has come up with a Gianduja ganache with maple and waffle croquante encased in white chocolate - and topped with duck crackling. Master chocolatier Paul A Young said he was thrilled to be involved - and has made his own special one off creation. "If you like the sound of salted raspberry reduction (and we do...Paul, we do...), topped with sacred gin martini ganache and enrobed in rose infused Ecuadorean raw chocolate, make sure you visit the website to take part!"
Where will the money go?
All the cash raised will go to Galvin's Chance, an initiative designed to support work schemes and apprenticeships in the service industry for young people aged 18-24 who haven't had the best start in life - whether they are ex-offenders, or at risk of getting involved in gang culture. More than half of those who've been through their programme have now managed to find proper paid work in front of house or similar roles - a fantastic achievement. Michel Roux Jnr is a great supporter. "I love what Chris and Fred have done. Too many young people feel like they have no future or do not have aspirations: it is important that we teach them a career and to believe in themselves."
Get involved - and get bidding - by visiting http://www.chocsforchance.org - where you can see what all the chefs and and food writers are offering for sale - and help make this Valentine's Day even sweeter than usual. The auction kicks off on 26 January and closes at 18:00 on 5 February 2015.