Wonka sos

Cameo Cinema St Helena, CA


Dr. Emiliana R. Simon-Thomas

Science Director, UC Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center


Chris Kollar

Master Chocolatier; Owner, Kollar Chocolates


Jessica Mennella

Perfumer; Flower Essence Therapist; Educator

Wonka— Why we love chocolate

We eat it to celebrate or when we're sad. We give it away to say "I love you" or sometimes, "I'm sorry." Why do we love chocolate? The answer is a combination of senses and science. Dr. Simon-Thomas will delve into the neuroscience of happiness; Chris Kollar will explore sense and science of artisanal chocolate-making; and Jessica Mennella will conduct an interactive sense experiment with the audience.

Cameo Cinema St Helena, CA

Film Synopsis

With dreams of opening a shop in a city renowned for its chocolate, a young and poor Willy Wonka discovers that the industry is run by a cartel of greedy chocolatiers.

    Based on the extraordinary character at the center of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Roald Dahl’s most iconic children’s book and one of the best-selling children’s books of all time, Wonka tells the wondrous story of how the world’s greatest inventor, magician and chocolate-maker became the beloved Willy Wonka we know today.

    From Paul King, writer/director of the Paddington films, comes an intoxicating mix of magic and music, mayhem and emotion, all told with fabulous heart and humor. Starring Timothée Chalamet in the title role, this irresistibly vivid and inventive big screen spectacle will introduce audiences to a young Willy Wonka, chock-full of ideas and determined to change the world one delectable bite at a time—proving that the best things in life begin with a dream, and if you’re lucky enough to meet Willy Wonka, anything is possible.

    Photo credit: Warner Bros. Pictures

    About the Speaker

    Emiliana Simon-Thomas is the Science Director at UC Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center. She earned her PhD in Psychology studying how emotional and cognitive processes interact to shape behavior and brain activity. During her post-doc, Emiliana studied the biological correlates and social functions of pro-social emotions like compassion, gratitude, and awe. is a leading expert on the neuroscience of human happiness.

    Master chocolatier Chris Kollar is the owner of Kollar Chocolates, an award-winning artisan chocolate shop located in the heart of Yountville in the Napa Valley. He was named to Dessert Professional Magazine’s Top Ten Chocolatiers of North America.

    Jess Mennella is a perfumer, flower essence therapist, and educator for whom the world of beauty and the vibrational power of nature are inextricably linked. Drawing from her training in natural perfumery, flower essence therapy, and meditation, she uses a range of techniques in the development of FLWR Napa Valley’s scents.