Chocolate production in different countries overgrown with their traditions and legends. This is an occasion not just to show up for a tasting, but to turn a visit to the factory into a full-fledged journey. Listen to stories, look at the technology and, as in other types of gastrotourism, catch a special moment – the birth of the product. We make a route from which everything will stick together: what chocolate factories in Europe are allowed on the tour.
The small homeland of the legendary chocolate will welcome you with open arms: in order for the country to seem even more chocolate, there are not enough houses made of truffle and praline. Although the tradition of production dates back only to the middle of the XVIII century, now 10 million people in Belgium prepare 170 000 tons of chocolate. Of the 12 largest factories are considered the most honored Neuhaus, Leonidas, Callebaut, Godiva and Guvlian, but becoming an insider will not be everywhere. Where to?
Brussels, Galerie de la Reine 29
Although the Neuhaus factory in Brussels does not arrange organized tours of production, for € 35 in a small group (up to 8 people) you can participate in a chocolate workshop. In one hour, a seasoned chocolatier will teach you to sculpt a candy from the slime. Not simple, but Belgian.
Same 63, 6982 La Roche-en-Ardenne
Everything will start a short film about cocoa, after which you will be told about the origin and production of chocolate and even show the technology (including how the manual work). At the end – tasting in the tea room. On all Pro all prep hour. Production tours of Cyril Chocolat are private and group: for the first, without tasting, you can get from Tuesday to Friday (from 12.30 to 17.00) for € 5, and large groups by appointment take every Saturday (at 14.00, 15.00 and 16.00), standard ticket – € 7, for children and pensioners – € 6.
In addition to tours of the chocolate factories of Belgium feel free to include in the route a few no less sweet museums. For example, Choco-Story in Bruges. One of the largest museums with its own library, it is dedicated to chocolate and the process of its production: from the history of the plant to the history of consumption of its fruits at its best. And the interactive exhibition Le temple du Chocolat (for schoolchildren from 6 to 12 years) is held by the Côte d’or company by appointment.
In Vevey, barely began XIX century, chocolate first appeared in solid form, in tiles. So Monsieur françois-Louis caillier launched the franchise “Swiss chocolate”. And it’s not just the name: the product has collected the best ingredients, and the manufacturer has fulfilled all the whims of the recipe – the highest content of cocoa butter, only Alpine milk and” elite ” beans from Ecuador, Venezuela, Madagascar or ivory coast. If desired, add to the tasting list and even Swiss cheese.
A special train runs between Montreux and the Maison Cailler chocolate factory in Brock. The factory is now owned by Nestle, and the production tour resembles a theme Park. The only thing that makes the trip more fantastic is the stop at Gruyere, the cheese factory and the castle. A train ticket can only be bought in first class, it costs about € 50, but can be more expensive or cheaper depending on the tour (its program and duration). All-day tours in July and August are available Monday to Friday, and in June, September and October on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.
Zurich, Pilgerweg 58
Lindt chocolate is available from may to September. The tour, which includes watching a short video, exploring the chocolate products with all the senses and tasting, will cost € 14 (up to 16 people; there are also group tours). Forty-minute tours are held from Monday to Saturday.
Geneva, Avenue Blanc 49
This factory is famous primarily for the taste variety of its products: chocolate with plum, whiskey, rum or champagne. For half an hour and € 26 show technical Arsenal and laboratory, per hour and € 78 – ‘ll send you to the world of chocolate, learn to sculpt tile and truffle, and during the workshop on 2 and a half hours (€ 156) dragged you into it almost to the level of Swiss chocolatiers.
Moving from one chocolate country to another, do not lose sight of a suitable chocolate factory in Austria.
Bergl, Bergl 56, 8333 Riegersburg
Austrian production Zotter reveals the secrets for € 17 adults, for € 14 teenagers (11-17 years) and € 11 – children from 6 to 10 years. The excursion program can be designed independently: choose a combination of chocolate with wine or an aperitif, and before or after hang in the “edible zoo”, a local farmer’s restaurant.
In addition to excursions to the factory Ritter Sport, Germany is full of places for the tourist-sweet tooth. Moreover, the local interactive museums are not inferior to the productions in the entertaining presentation of history or tasty encouragement of guests.
Halle, Delitzscher Straße 70
The Halloren Schokoladenfabrik factory is one of the oldest in Germany. It was founded in 1804, and to this day it produces chocolate business cards of the country-Original Halloren-Kugeln or “gallor balls”. All this because the shape of the sweets resembles the round buttons on the shape of the salt pans in Halle. Now chocolate balls filled with all that the lack of imagination pastry: orange poppy, plum and rum, yoghurt and raspberries. On the tour, traditional elements such as the history of the factory and production technology are added to the demonstration of the chocolate room, and for a fee – tasting. Depending on the duration of the tour and its components, a trip to the factory will cost an adult from € 8 to € 20.
Pirmasens, Unterer Sommerwaldweg 19-20
Excursion to the Wawi factory is free: from 8.00 to 18.00 from Monday to Friday and from 9.00 to 13.00 on Saturdays. Moreover, groups can book 30-minute tour with a guide who speaks English or German: the visit must be reserved in advance by writing to firstname.lastname@example.org. Travelers are allowed to take a look at the manufacturing process (through the glass, but it was informative), and then to the chocolate Museum and café. The program is crowned by an outlet store at the exit.
Chocolate Museum Imfhoff-Stollwerck Schokoladenmuseum Koln
Cologne, Am Schokoladenmuseum 1a
A unique thing in the Cologne chocolate Museum is a greenhouse with cocoa trees of different types. Behind it is a small chocolate factory, where all the machines are equipped with small Windows: so you can see the process of birth of chocolate bars, figures or pralines from and to. The second floor of the Museum is dedicated to the full history of the product: from the discovery of chocolate by the Mayans and Aztecs to its use in medieval Europe. This topic is picked up by the third, where a special timeline captures the most important names of the cocoa bean industry.
The Museum also has a cafe and a tall chocolate fountain. These are not all points of the program, so take a ticket (for an adult – € 11,50) and feel free to go for the sweet sensations.
If in the quirkiness of the recipe it is necessary to choose the flagship, the confectionery tradition of France is worthy of this title before the others. Even in the XVIII century, new varieties were born here from a mixture with Orchid or orange flowers and almond milk.
Even today, the French are not indifferent to chocolate with oranges, which is even used as a seasoning for meat dishes.
L’atelier du Chocolat
Bayonne, Z. A. Ste Croix, 7 Allée de Gibéléou
Excursion to the factory L’atelier du Chocolat (per visit – € 6 for adults and € 3 for children) in the most playful and entertaining way tells the same story of chocolate beans. It is especially good that the older guests get a tasting at the end, and the younger audience – the opportunity to paint a chocolate figure and, if informed, take it home. In addition, the website of the chocolate Atelier constantly updates the program of activities, among which there are interesting workshops.
La Cite du Chocolat
Ten-L’hermitage, 12 Avenue du Président Roosevelt
The small town is the residence of the famous chocolate brand Valrhona. In the “city of chocolate” will show and its different types, and methods of production, and will lead you to 100% chocolate cafe. All this is part of a huge mechanism, the school Valrhona Ecole du Grand Chocolat, which trains professional chefs and chocolatiers, and for “dummies”-enthusiasts offers a three-day intensive course. A ticket for an interactive tour for an adult (adults here – from 14 years) costs from € 9. To touch the production process more thoroughly, sign up for master classes.
Chocolate and chocolate products organically fit into the gastronomic map of Italy and play by the same principles: with local features in each region. In Turin appeared bicherin (a drink of coffee, hot chocolate and fresh cream), which has become a national treasure and a landmark of Piedmont. The Cioccolato chocolate festival is held there every March. The annual October festival Eurochocolate is in Perugia, where there is even chocolate pasta (exclusively in the Italian sense) and chocolate salami.
Perugina Casa Del Cioccolato
Perugia, Viale San Sisto, 207/C
Speaks and shows the “House of chocolate” confectionery factory Perugina: the process of making chocolate and the history of the company-a classic program. It is here, among other sweets, Italian chocolate “kisses”, baci sweets come from the conveyors. Entrance to the tour – € 9 for adults and for children of different ages – € 4-7. In addition, here you can become a chocolatier for the day, if you fit into the course of the factory “Chocolate school”.
Florence, Via Romana 161
The discovery of Columbus, the culprit of moving cocoa beans to Europe, in Spain cherish with special piety. In the production of chocolate is equally strong traditions and experiments. And along with museums and industrial tours, you can even fit into a chocolate tour of Barcelona.
Museu De La Xocolata
Barcelona, Carrer del Comerç, 36
Catalan traditions are served at the Museu De La Xocolata. This is a little more than a standard tour with the history of cocoa. For € 6 (this is how much a standard ticket costs) you will see cool chocolate sculptures and will be able to participate in various activities from tasting to drawing with chocolate.
Villajoyosa, S. A. Pianista Gonzalo Soriano, 13
Villajoyosa, where the Valor factory is located – is such a chocolate city that cocoa particles are part of its air. From the point of view of the chocolate industry, it became an important point in the XVIII century, taking beans from Venezuela and Ecuador and not squandering imported goods to no avail. The family business Valor Chocolate opened a century later. And now, in order to increase people’s awareness of chocolate Affairs, invites visitors to the free 45-minute tours. The schedule with time, languages of excursions and other details is on the website. Be prepared (- and) that in the best Spanish traditions local will add to chocolate churros.