… in a word – dead. The second thought that immediately comes to mind: decomposed.
Scores of no name (that’s OK) / low game (at an event with this rep that should be no way) players. Candy & confection ruled the roost – appropriate for Halloween weekend. How to best sell slag? The most tried ‘n true, trick or treat method: dangle sexable objects holding platters of it in front of the media clowns to glom on, which they did with all the zeal of Miley Cyrus fans. Sweet.
In fairness, there were a few exceptions. The chocolate good-guys from Guittard anchored the floor; Cotton Tree Lodge was in the room; the spice contingent from World Flavors perhaps the single most alluring attraction (save for those models, of course), & the novel bar makers from al-Nassma in Dubai producing a Camel’s Milk Chocolate (complicated story). Plus, some of the demos were worthwhile.
Otherwise, the European producers of this no-show should have their work-visas revoked. If it’s a case of “it’s the economy, stupid” (precisely when the “…the tough get going”), then for the sake of damage control they should’ve just canceled or turned it over to migrant workers & coyotes from south of the border – who to a much higher probability at least have a drop of the original stewards of cacáo in their blood (re: Aztecs-Maya-Olmec, et. al.) – to throw the party chocolate celebrates.