NC NOW | Matthew Shepherd - Hillsborough, NC Chocolatier | UNC-TV

Uploaded by kellymccullen on 27.04.2010

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\ Kelly McCullen: Matthew Shepherd graduated
from culinary school and began working in the fine dining industry. First, the new job
wasn't what he had in mind. Second, daily rigors of preparing meals hurt. \
\ Matthew Shepherd: I was having trouble with
my hands when I was working partly on the line. So, it was a lot of heavy pans and the
lifting. Wedding cakes killed me \'96 all the little decorating. \
\ Kelly Mc: Matthew developed arthritis to complement
his dread of going to work. \{4\}\ \
Matthew Shepherd \'96 I think a lot of arthritis, a lot of problems, come from stress and self-inflicted.
Like, if you hate something, your body is going to do what it needs to do to get you
out of a situation. \ \
Kelly Mc: Matthew worked in the incense business a while and took his cooking skills to his
personal kitchen. He whipped up some treats one winter. That changed his career trajectory.
\ \
Matthew Shepherd \'96 I did chocolates one year for Christmas as gifts and things just
fell into place.\ \
Natural Sound of Chocolatier Matthew Shepherd \
\ Kelly Mc: Matthew Shepherd would be a chocolatier.
\ \
Matthew Shepherd \'96 Door \'96 You just go for it. When a door opens, you jump. You don't
jump, the doors don't open any more. \ \
Natural Sound of Matthew making chocolate \
\ Matthew Shepherd \'96 Dime \'96 When I opened
the door, I had ten cents in my bank account and I thought, \'93This is either going to
go or it's not\'94 \ \
Kelly Mc: Matthew had friends in Hillsborough and loved the town atmosphere, so that's where
he'd go. The stress and the kitchen-induced joint pain went. \
\ Matthew Shepherd \'96 Different - The chocolate
making \'96 it's a little different. It's not as stressful on my hands...and the stress
is different. So, I think the stress played a lot in my arthritis.\
\ Kelly Mc: He loved working with dark Belgian
chocolate and hoped it wouldn't place him at odds with local customers who may hold
a sweeter tooth than Belgian dark allows. \{10\}\
\ Matthew Shepherd: When I opened the shop,
I thought it was going to be a fight because I do mostly dark chocolate and I thought everybody
was going to want milk. And it turns out that people really started liking the darker chocolates.
\ \
Kelly Mc: It turns out chocolate tasting can be much like wine tasting \'96 as simple or
as complex as you'd like. \ \
Matthew Shepherd \'96 So, this is 80% dark chocolate. Most dark chocolate is very bitter
and chalky and it's not very enjoyable; this is going to be dark but you'll see it's got
a lot of fruity notes. Just pop it in. You want to get it all melty.\
\ Kelly Mc: It should be crunchy at first?
\ \
Matthew Shepherd: Yeah, that's the tempering. That's the snap.\
\ Kelly Mc: And it's that it melts immediately?\
\ Matthew Shepherd: You want it to.\
\ Kelly Mc: If you want it to.\
\ Matthew Shepherd: No, you DO want it to. You
get candy bars at the stores and you chew on them for five minutes before they start
melting. \ \
Kelly Mc: Not good?\ \
Matthew Shepherd: That's not chocolate. \ \
NAT SOUND \'96 Chocolate Shop \ \
Kelly Mc: Do you want to eat a piece of chocolate to eat it or do you pop it in your mouth and
let it melt away?\ \
Matthew Shepherd: I prefer to let it melt. If I'm eating a solid piece of chocolate,
I like to let it melt. Breathe out of your nose. Roll it around and you like to pick
up a lot more different \'96 sometimes you get some smoky hints, sometimes it's fruity,
sometimes it's more vanilla. \ \
Natural Sound of Matthew Making Chocolate \
\ Simple \'96 Kelly Mc: Is it too simple to
put a piece of your chocolate, eat it, in our mouths let it dissolve, and go \'93Wow,
I like that. I don't know why. I just do.\'94 \
\ Matthew Shepherd: It's never too simple.
\ \
Kelly Mc: Not too simple. That's the basis of it all.\
\ Matthew Shepherd: As long as you like it,
for whatever reason you like it, it's an indulgence. A lot of people don't pick up all the little
notes or the things but they still enjoy it for what it is.\
\ Kelly Mc: So, it's possible to grab a piece
of chocolate and simply relax. Matthew says he'll do the thinking and the crafting to
make sure a fine piece of chocolate is as much an experience as a snack.\
\ Matthew Shepherd \'96 I probably make 70 to
80 different chocolates right now.\ \
Kelly Mc: Where do you stop? A hundred or do you just keep going?\
\ Matthew Shepherd: You don't. Some fall away
and new ones come in. Sometimes, I sit with the books and I go through them and go, \'93Oh,
I haven't made that one in a while.\'94\ \
Kelly Mc: So, you get bored.\ \
Matthew Shepherd: I do get bored. That's why the chocolates change every week. The bark
stays the same. The dipped fruit stays the same but the truffles and the creams I keep
changing up.\ \
Kelly Mc: But, a chocolate-covered strawberry will be in style a thousand years from now.\
\ Matthew Shepherd: Only in season.....\{Laughs\}\
\ \