Switzerland is the place to stock up on quality chocolate — the country’s history with the candy dates back to the early 1800s. In Geneva, hundreds of sweet concoctions are turned out every day by 30 chocolate masters. Many of the shops are located within a short proximity to each other, so it’s possible to create your own chocolate walking tour. Here are our picks for the most delicious spots.
Seven generations of the Favarger family have been making chocolate since 1826. Today, they perform the entire chocolate-making process in house, from selecting the cocoa beans to roasting, grinding and blending them.
The result is a selection of treats like their best-selling Heritage bar (flavors range from dark chocolate with apricots to traditional milk chocolate). You also can choose from a drinking chocolate and specialty items such as the chocolate and pralines.
Favarger also offers guided tours and chocolate workshops where you craft your own creations. Additionally, the company is UTZ Certified, meaning it has the stamp of approval from the largest sustainable-growing certification for coffee and cocoa in the world.
Du Rhône Chocolatier
Shortly after this store was founded in 1875, demand for its pralines was so high that, allegedly, horse-drawn carriages crowded the street unwilling to move until they got their chocolate fix.
Over the years, Du Rhône became a favorite with the likes of Grace Kelly, Winston Churchill and culinary critics around the world. Many fell in love with the house specialty, mocca glacé (a coffee-infused chocolate), but you’ll also find truffles, hot chocolate and a hazelnut-chocolate spread.
The main shop is in Geneva, but cities like London, Taipei and Riyadh also have boutiques.
Dolf Teuscher began making chocolates more than 70 years ago. Today, the brand boasts of using all-natural ingredients and shipping craft chocolates around the globe. Teuscher has 100-plus varieties, using original recipes that have been handed down over the generations.
While the champagne truffles may be the best-sellers, your taste buds won’t want to overlook the pink peppercorn chocolate bars, the seasonal Easter bunnies or the line of sugar-free chocolates — which uses fruit sweetener — available in bar and biscuit form. Another perennial favorite is the Schokoladentorte, a moist chocolate cake made with wheat flour.
Though the chocolate company, founded in 1947 by Paul Stettler, is more than willing to be adventurous with some of its offerings (like basil or rose water truffles), traditional flavors still reign. The almond-studded chocolates are heavenly. Orange peel chocolates have a burst of citrus. You will even find chocolate croissants.
Other specialties created by this chocolatier include the classic Pavés de Genève (Geneva paving stones), which are cubed pieces of chocolate truffle dusted with cocoa powder. French and English tours tempt you even more.
Opened by Henri Auer in 1939, this company remains a family-run business that sits in its original location. The specialties of the house are made by hand, and all the truffles, including the black truffle, are hand-coated.
Be sure to seek out the ganaches, which have a praline and cream center with chocolate coating. The divine Grenoble version is topped with half walnuts.
Still, Auer may be best known for its Amandes Princesse, a delightful collection of roasted almonds, enrobed with milk chocolate and sprinkled with cocoa powder.