Chocolate, cheese & wine in Switzerland
Switzerland was formed by an alliance of cantons against the Habsburg dynasty in 1291. Celtic tribes originally inhabited Switzerland, and it was conquered in the 1st century BC by the Romans.
For 500 years, Switzerland was under a Roman province that helped this area by building roads between major cities for trading.
Did you know that cacao came to Switzerland in 1819 and was not even founded by the Swiss? Yes, it’s true; cacao, the main ingredient in making chocolate, was first found in ancient Mesoamerica, presently known as Mexico.
The Olmec in Latin America was the first civilisation to turn cocoa into chocolate. But the chocolate made by the Olmec was very bitter and looked like a paste. Swiss chocolate pioneers did the conversion of the bitter paste into a delicious, silky confection.
History of Chocolate in Switzerland
Switzerland’s most famous chocolate is milk chocolate. The first-ever solid milk chocolate bar was made by Daniel Peter, a Swiss confectioner using condensed milk. In Vevey, condensed milk was actually created by his neighbour, Henri Nestlé. Vevey was and still is a famous city in Switzerland as it is home to Nestlé’s world headquarters of the international food and beverage company founded in 1867 by Henry Nestlé. The world-known festival “Fête des Vignerons” takes place in Vevey and has exquisite wine.
In 1819, François-Louis Cailler (1796-1852) invented the first mechanised production of pressed chocolate. He then opened the first chocolate factory in Vevey to produce the mass production of Switzerland’s first chocolate confection. Switzerland’s most important industry is chocolate, and its annual revenue in Switzerland is 1.5 billion francs (about $1.5 billion). Out of the total production of chocolate which is 180,000 tons per year, 61% is sold abroad, and 39% is sold in Switzerland.
Did you know that Switzerland has more than 17 different chocolate manufacturing companies? Yes, some famous chocolate manufacturers include Sprungli, Lindt, and many more.
Things to do in Switzerland
There are many things to explore do in Switzerland like wine tasting, chocolate factory tour, cheese tasting, Rhine falls boating, sky diving and many more. But mine are wine tasting, chocolate factory tour and cheese tasting. Let me tell you about share my experience of with these tours.
Cheese tasting was one of the best experiences of my trip to Switzerland, and I will never forget it. We got to see how different cheeses are made and how they are stored. But the best part of this tour was tasting all the different cheeses and the various finished products made from them.
Another unique experience of my life was at a wine tasting tour. On this tour, I also got to see the process of making wine and its storage. After the tour, we were also given a few samples of wine to try. Since I was underage, my parents tried all the different kinds of wine. But I tried one of the wines called the candy wine.
The most delicious part of my trip to Switzerland was the ‘Chocolate Factory Tour’. In this mouth-watering tour, we got to see the history of chocolate and how it was made and stored.
During the tour, we got to try all the sample different kinds of chocolates they made, and we could eat as much as we wanted. At the end of the tour, we exited the store with boxes of chocolates and guess what? We could even buy some of the flavours that have not been released internationally.
My experience of Switzerland
Visiting Switzerland was one of my parents’ most unbelievable decisions. The adventures we had in Switzerland were incredible. We did so many different things like hang-gliding, and we also went to the top of one of the most famous mountains, the Jungfraujoch. It had a small café midway which had one of the best fondues I have ever eaten.
One of the most famous dishes cuisines in Switzerland is the fondue, which is melted cheese with croutons. I will never forget the adventures I did in Switzerland because they were mind-blowing. I think that everyone should go to Switzerland at least once foe for a mouth-watering memorable experience filled with chocolates and wine.
Contributor: Advay Khetan
About our Writing Program Student
Advay is an 9th grader, studying in Delhi Public School, Faridabad.
He enjoys playing basketball, reading and playing the piano.
He is enthusiastic about marine creatures and space.