History of the chocolate
the story of the transformation of cocoa into chocolate.
the mystical lives of the Mayans and the
Aztecs, who saw their chocolate drink as a drink from the gods.
Discover how the
Spanish came across this drink which at first they found unpalatable,
but later thirst-quenching.
Follow the success
that the sweet chocolate drink found in the royal courts
of Spain, France and later on throughout the whole of Europe.
Learn about the
process of making chocolate and why Belgian chocolate is so
according to cocoa traces found in terra cotta pots, the Mayas of Colha
(in the North of what today is Belize, Central America)
drank chocolate with a lot of foam.
Mayas and Aztecs mix the cocoa in hot water with various ingredients
(water, cornstarch, peppers, honey…)
in different proportions according to the desired drink.
Hernan Cortés disembarks on the coast of what is now Mexico. The
conquistadores discover the cocoa drink
1527: Hernan Cortés returns to Spain and brings back the famous
hot chocolate recipe adapted
to the taste of the colonists of new Spain as well as the utensils to
prepare it: a chocolatiere and a foamer.
1615: Anne of Austria, Infanta of Spain, marries Louis XIII and
quickly shares her passion
for hot chocolate at the court of France
17th and 18th centuries: the European nobility and the
aristocracy adore hot chocolate.
1660: the marriage of Louis XIV to Marie Thérèse of Austria,
increases the courtiers'
passion for chocolate
1725: Louis XV marries Marie Leszcynska. She loves hot chocolate,
as do the favourites,
who use it for its aphrodisiac qualities
18th century: in England, chocolate is mixed with milk and not
1825: invention of the degreasing of cocoa by Van Houten in
1828: Van Houten files a patent for the first chocolate in powder
1904: Poulain launches its famous orange coloured chocolate
1914: the launch in France of the chocolate flavoured banana
which will warm the French troops in the trenches
1961: launch in France, after the United States, of Nestlé's
Nesquick, flavoured with cinnamon,
which today is the world's best selling chocolate drink powder.
End of the 20th century: "old-style" hot chocolate is in fashion
it is prepared with melted couverture chocolate.
Evolution of the chocolate bar
The history of the chocolate bar
starts much later that that of the chocolate drink.
the London store Coffee Mill and Tobasco Roll offers for the first time
"Spanish style chocolate rolls" which could be bitten.
1830: development of the techniques of moulding. Established in
Charles-Amédée Kohler mixes chocolate with hazelnuts for the first time
1847: the moulding of the first tablet in England gives birth to
1875: thanks to the invention of condensed milk by Henri Nestlé,
Swiss Daniel Peter develops a recipe for milk chocolate
1879: Swiss Rodolphe Lindt develops couverture chocolate and the
recipe for dark chocolate.
End 19th century: Menier sells millions of small dark chocolate
sticks to be inserted into a piece of bread.
1984: the French chocolate maker Raymond Bonnat of Voiron (Isere)
the first collection of noir chocolates "Les Grands Crus de Cacao".
End of the 20th century: A trend towards back to basics, to
original and authentic flavours,
even a preoccupation with traceability, may explain the appearance of
cocoa vintages, like cépages for wine.