When you hear the word, Switzerland, what comes to mind? I know when I hear Switzerland, I think of the Alps and skiing, which we did, but this is a blog about something else. How many of you thought of, The Cailler chocolate factory? I’m almost certain not a lot of you did. But that is where we went, touring the Cailler chocolate factory. The company, Cailler has been making chocolate since 1819 and is still making chocolate for the locals and visitors today. Unlimited sampling of this delicious chocolate. Heh heh heh. But only after the tour.
When you first enter the factory, there is a theatre on your left and a shop stocked with chocolate on your right. The theatre is showing the history of chocolate and an interactive quiz that you can do after the tour.
Finally, it was our turn to start the tour. We received audio-guides that looked like tv remotes that we could put around our neck like a necklace and we entered a small room that had plants and leaves and Aztec sculptures in it. The room was dim, and there was a soundtrack playing with the noises of birds, and leaves falling to the ground and the wind. There was a fog machine on the roof giving the room a very misty, jungle like feel. Suddenly, the voice of a man talking about the history of the coco bean came blasting through the speakers.
After listening to this guy’s whole speech about chocolate, doors opened at the other side of the room which led us to another room. And so it went. We kept entering different rooms and listening to the audio in the rooms until we finally popped out into a wide hallway with a lot of different stories that you could listen to through the audio-guide. There were desks in the hall too. On them, were the coco beans, coco fat, and other chocolate ingredients that you could touch. After listening to the stories that there were in that hall, you walk down a narrower hall with a glass wall on one side. On the opposite side of the glass was a machine demonstrating how they make chocolate cylinders. The machine put long strings of chocolate on paper. Then, the chocolate went through a cooling tube, got chopped into small cylinders, doused in liquid chocolate mixed with hazel nuts, then put through yet another cooling tube. Finally, after being cooled, the cylinders would be wrapped and then you could taste the finished product. If you kept going through the hall, there were screens at the other end where you could see how they make the chocolate in the factory. Different kinds of chocolate, not cylinders. Finally, you could read a tutorial on how to be a chocolate taster and then at the end of the tour, you were greeted by unlimited samples of chocolate. And that was lunch. We hadn’t had lunch yet so this was the sweetest lunch I’ve ever had. We had quite the visit (and meal) at the Cailler chocolate factory!