Melt into the World of Swiss Chocolates
The ultimate choice for the ones who have a sweet tooth
Chocolate is more than just a sweet temptation, it has been a part of the Swiss culture for more than 200 years; this is evident from the many chocolate museums, special tours and famous chocolate shops that you can visit in Switzerland.
The history of chocolates in Switzerland dates back to the 17th century. Chocolates weren’t a delicious confection then. It was merely chewy and gravelly, slowly becoming unpalatable. It began in the region of Ticino, located near Switzerland’s southern border with Italy-the Swiss used their transit position strategically for goods passing through Europe to begin the processing of chocolates. In the year 1875, Swiss chocolatier Daniel Peter was the first one to add powdered milk in the grainy solid chocolate, creating milk chocolates, which is a huge industry now. In 1879, Rodolphe Lindt, came up with the process of conching- a process of mixing that is still relevant today in the manufacturing of chocolates.
By the end of the 19th century, Frey Brothers, Philippe Suchard, Jean Tobler and a few others contributed in making Switzerland the home of the world’s richest and best chocolates.
A Worthy Souvenir
We all have relatives or friends who visit Switzerland and always get the world famous Swiss chocolates as a souvenir. Not just that, there are a number of exhibitions, tours, and chocolate tastings for visitors who love chocolates. “Anything is good if it is made of chocolate” – goes a famous quote by British comedian Jo Brand. There are chocolate factories that one should not miss when they visit Switzerland as there is a provision to create your own version of chocolates. Visitors get a chance to learn the art of tempering, making ganache and other things through chocolate workshops held here.
“We recently visited Switzerland and experienced heaven on Earth. The best part about the trip was our visit to the sweetest place on the paradise: The Lindt Swiss chocolate heaven! The entire trip would have remained incomplete if I had not brought back the famous Swiss chocolates home. Not only does this shop sell chocolates but also exhibits the chocolate-making process and history of Lindt in the country of snow. Believe me when I say that we had the best taste of chocolates and nothing beats Swiss chocolates after all,” says Riddhi Roy, operations manager in a Kolkata based Travel company.
Switzerland has the world’s highest per capita rate of chocolate consumption, that is, 25.6 lbs per year. One of the major sources of revenue of the Swiss economy is the chocolate industry that is an extremely important sector in the food industry. The annual revenue of chocolate production in Switzerland is about USD 1.5 billion. The Swiss produces about 180,000 tonnes of chocolate per year, of which, about 39 pc is sold in Switzerland, and the rest 61 pc is sold all over the world. If you are a chocolate lover, Switzerland is the ideal place for you.
The Most Famous Swiss Chocolates
Lindt & Sprüngli: One of the most renowned chocolate brands throughout the world, Lindt & Sprüngli, or commonly known as Lindt, has its company headquartered in Kilchberg, Switzerland. Lindt acquired American chocolatier Ghirardelli in the year 1998 as a wholly-owned subsidiary. It acquired American candy maker Russel Stover in the year 2014, whose brands include Whitman’s chocolate. Lindt has a chocolate exhibit at the Jungfraujoch and a Lindt Chocolate Experience at the Swiss Museum of Transport in Luzern.
Cailler: The oldest chocolate manufacturer in Switzerland, Cailler is known as one of the world’s finest chocolates. Frigor and Cailler are its brands that are made in the company’s factory in Broc. Cailler is not widely exported, hence it is not as famous as Lindt or Toblerone. It is available on Amazon, but people make it a point to buy it from Switzerland, whenever they visit, to get the different varieties. It is one of the few brands of milk chocolate that is made with slightly condensed milk, instead of powdered milk.
Toblerone: Toblerone was created by Theodor Tobler and Emil Baumann in Bern, Switzerland in 1908. It is a distinctive triangular shaped milk chocolate including nougat, almonds and honey. The word Toblerone is a combination of Tobler’s name with the Italian word torrone (a type of nougat). Toblerone is one of the most famous Swiss chocolates and is exported to many countries.
Teuscher: The expert chocolatier Dolf Teuscher created Teuscher in the Swiss Alps during the early 1940s. It is famous worldwide for their widely distributed network of stylish chocolate shops located in New York, Abu Dhabi, Singapore, Beverly Hills and over 20 locations throughout the world; although, it has only two stores in Switzerland, one in Zurich and one in Geneva. The highlight of Teuscher chocolates is that they are made using natural ingredients – no chemicals, additives, or preservatives.
Frey: The best-selling and acclaimed chocolate in Switzerland, Frey was started by the Frey brothers in the year 1887. It was later purchased in 1950 by the Swiss supermarket chain Migros. Frey claims to be the only major brand of chocolate that is solely produced within Switzerland.