This past holiday season, Sydney Johnson visited the Ritz-Carlton Hotel at Dove Mountain to get an early view of a life-size gingerbread house. Johnson received a personal tour from Janice Macy, Daniel Mangione, the executive chef, and Amanda Taylor, the pastry supervisor.
The gingerbread bricks/tiles were made in September and they have made more than 5,000 tiles. The enormous structure was build large enough for visitors to even dine in. The chefs ordered supplies like honey in June and candy palettes in May. The main ingredient was honey—275 gallons of it!
It all has to come from the same farm. The rest of the ingredients are flour, sugar, ginger, milk, cinnamon, and three-week-old egg whites! (Don’t eat it!) They use a wood frame to stabilize the house. To attach the gingerbread tiles, they use royal icing. There is even a real fireplace inside! Red and green candy were used to decorate the house, like candy canes and spice drops. Macy also gave us a tour of the kitchen. The mixers the chefs use are 60 quarts. Before they did the gingerbread house there was a teepee and a Hohokam hut in previous years. There are also Santa pictures done inside.
This event celebrated its third year. The hotel served lunch and dinner inside the house with each seat ranging from $250 to $400. The house was open through the end of December 2016.