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Chocolate With Everything

by karjam 

Posted: 23 October 2004
Word Count: 1013

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According to a recent survey, one in two women prefers chocolate to a night of passion. Chocolate continues to become ever more popular, with Britons spending £3 billion on half a million tonnes of chocolate in 2001.
A closer look at the chocolate market reveals a lot more to this comforting snack than just the average chocolate bar on the supermarket shelves.
A spicy potion made by the ancient Maya people of Central America, started it all off when beans from cocoa trees were roasted, ground and mixed with water, maize meal, vanilla and chilli to produce ‘Chocolatl’. In 1528 the Spanish concocted their own version by swapping the chilli for cinnamon, nutmeg and sugar, which became the fashionable drink of the Spanish court. It wasn’t until the 1650s that the chocolate drink was introduced into England. The London Chocolate House opened in 1657 serving chocolate as an expensive luxury drink alongside ale, beer and coffee. The drink was turned into solid ‘eating’ chocolate by Fry’s in 1847, with Cadbury’s introducing a similar product 2 years later.
Where to get it
Thousands of different kinds of chocolate can be obtained from a variety of outlets.
• The Internet: A selection of premium chocolate from around the world can be found at www.chocolatetradingco.com, from unique novelties such as chocolate trout, turtles, shrimps, bombs, snails and sardines to rich chocolate sauces and Chocoholics Gift Boxes.
• In your own home: Hold a chocolate party! Run by a Reading based company, ‘Chocolates for Chocoholics Ltd’, chocolate parties are becoming an extremely popular part of their business. View, sample and order from a range of delicious chocolate gifts with prices starting at just 10p, in the comfort of your own living room. Contact: www.chocolate-for-chocoholics.co.uk or Telephone 0118 932 1043.
• A ‘Chocolate House’: The “1657” Chocolate House, a cafe in the Lakeland market town of Kendal in Cumbria, boasts 38 varieties of drinking chocolate and 22 varieties of chocolate gateaux, served by waitresses dressed in the uniform of the period. “1657” also have a shop with 300 varieties of chocolate to choose from as well as offering a mail order and wedding service. Telephone: 01539 740 702.
• Chocolate Factory: Discover the history, the making and the magic of Cadbury World, the only purpose built visitor centre in the UK devoted entirely to chocolate. As well as the famous chocolate “Coronation Street”, adults and children will enjoy ‘CADABRA’, a ‘beanmobile’ ride through an enchanted chocolate wonderland. Round off your visit with a browse around the chocolate shop dedicated to chocolate and chocolate merchandise.

Chocolate Surveys
• 33% of people surveyed were not prepared to do without the luxury of chocolate (Abbey National/NOP ‘Saving Money’ Sept 2002)
• 7 in 10 people rewarded themselves with chocolate at work after completing their least favourite tasks (Office Angles 2001)
• 1 in 9 mothers say they could not get by without chocolate during pregnancy (Cow & Gate 2002)
• 18,000 chocolate lollies were sold by Thorntons in the form of leaders heads during the 2001 General Election – Blair 46%, Hague 34% and Kennedy 17% (Thornton Chocolate Lolly Poll 2001)
• 57% of UK children spend their weekly pocket money on chocolate (Walls Pocket Money Monitor 2000)

Chocolate Titbits
• In 2002 Swiss Post introduced chocolate scented postage stamps to mark the centenary of ‘Chocosuisse’, the association of chocolate makers and importers.
• A chocolate lager was launched by Meantime Brewery in June 2002 to attract women away from wine and to help break down the masculine association of beer.
• In October 1973, a Swedish sweet maker was buried in accordance with his last wish. Roland Ohisson of Falkenberg was buried in a coffin made of nothing but chocolate!
• Chocolate was one of the gifts exchanged between Russian cosmonauts and American astronauts aboard the Russian space station Mir.
• Chocolate syrup was used for the infamous shower scene in the film ‘Psycho’.

Virtual Chocolate
• For chocolate without the guilt, visit www.virtualchocolate.com and download some chocolate wallpaper for your computer screen or send a friend a virtual chocolate treat – calorie free! You can also join their chocoholic club or use their on-line searchable directory to locate chocolate companies around the world.
• www.familyeducation.com gives details of some interesting virtual chocolate factory tours. Explore the Hershey plant in Pennsylvania, the Lindt & Sprungli factory in Switzerland, get an animated tour of the M&M factory or visit the animated playground created by Nestle and inspired by Roald Dahl’s ‘Willy Wonka’.

Chocolate and Sex
• Combine the two exquisite pleasures of chocolate and sex with The Pocket Book of Sex and Chocolate by Richard Craze, published by Godsfield Press. Written for those who wish to take their lovemaking to new heights of pleasure, passion and taste with chocolate recipes and delicious erotic games ranging from saucy to classy available from www.amazon.com
• Naughty chocolate products can be bought from ‘Bizarre’ the alternative gift store. Chocolate Willy’s, Creamy Boobs, Bite Size Bums and the ‘Forbidden Fruits Game’ which comes supplied with strawberry, chocolate and raspberry sauce and whipped cream!

Revitalising Chocolate
• For the chocolate experience without the guilt, but a lot more expensive, a ‘chocolate spa’ is just the thing. The Fairmont Royal York Hotel in Toronto, Canada offers a Chocolate Romance Package, rates starting from $525, which includes a ‘Chocolate Indulgence Body Treatment’. This ultimate chocolate pamper package begins with a chocolate-raspberry mousse jet bath surrounded by the aroma of chocolate scented candles, followed by a chocolate exfoliating body polish and a chocolate-fondue body wrap, ending with a luxurious chocolate body cream massage.

• If your budget won’t quite stretch to such an extravagant trip, then don’t despair. Boots Fresh! have come up with their own version of the chocolate spa – “A Recipe for Sinful Indulgence” includes a Wickedly Good Bath Soak, Chocofetish Massage Bar and a Choc-a-block Lip Balm. Top this off with chocolate scented candles, available from Wax and Wane, ranging from £2.99 to £6.99. Tel: 01522 545 838 or email info@waxandwane.co.uk

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Comments by other Members

Account Closed at 08:43 on 24 October 2004  Report this post
Reading this has put me off chocolate, rather than having the opposite effect! I'm fine when it comes to eating but sitting in it? - no thanks, give me mud any day.

A well-researched article, Karen and one that will be popular especially around Christmas - in France, it is traditional to give chocolates for Christmas (eg to a teacher).

Has it been publised anywhere?


karjam at 10:47 on 24 October 2004  Report this post

Thanks for your comments Elspeth. I did submit it to a magazine a few months ago but they rejected it. I'm thinking of re-working it to make "10 ways to get your Chocolate Fix"!

me at 17:36 on 24 October 2004  Report this post
A nice piece, though like Elspeth I njow have no desire for a piece. The idea of bathing in thick syrupy chocolate is to me anything but indulgent or erotic.

I have visited a number of the places you mention and report they all deserve a visit (probably better enjoyed in a group of adults).

Good luck with the re-submission.


CheekyGrin at 18:23 on 02 December 2004  Report this post
An interesting article. I did find the first half of it a bit jumpy. Also I thought giving telephone numbers by some items detracted from it - it made it seem a bit like a sponsored advert which i thought undermined the objectivity of the list of unusual outlets.

I found the chocolate bath entertaining - it made me wonder if people drank the bathwater and how they knew when it was time to change it! It didn't put me off - maybe that's a male/female difference in the readership.

With a bit of editing and polish this could be a first class article. Good luck with your re-submission.


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