With Easter bank holiday fast approaching, all we can talk about in the office is chocolate. It’s become synonymous with this time of year but how did chocolate make it to British shores in the first place? Let us explain.
When chocolate was first introduced to Britain by the French and Spanish, who themselves imported it from the Americas, it wasn’t well received. In 1657 it was sold in a liquid form as the ‘West India Drink’ by a Frenchman on Queens Head Alley, Bishopgate Street. However, the chocolate was attributed with negative connotations associated with the nationalities of the sellers and chocolate’s future looked grim.
Like most popular food and drink products now, it was rebranded as a cure-all for most ailments, including a hangover, but the primary selling point was its apparent historical aphrodisiac qualities. The cold chocolate liqueur was sweetened with the addition of milk and sold in coffee houses, although coffee was far more popular. These coffee houses were high society, cementing chocolate’s status as a luxurious and decadent indulgence.
British manufacturer Cadburys started with the first shop on Bull Street, Birmingham in 1824. Innovations in manufacturing lead to the creation of the Bourneville factory which was one of the first factories to also provide housing and community for its workers. You’d be surprised when some of your favorite were invented.
If you’re looking for a delicious corporate social or breakout session then take a look at our Chocolate Making Class and if you’re going to grab a Cream Egg this Easter, tell us how you eat yours.