It's easy to find good chocolate in London. You only need to go to Harrods Chocolate Room or Selfridges Food Hall and you'll find some of the most beautiful, delicious hand crafted chocolates in London.
However, London is bigger than just Central and we have some of the best chocolate makers scattered around that often get missed out of the tours and guides.
Having been on many of the tours, which are brilliant and well worth it, I saw a gap in that there were no self guided tours. I love mooching about on my own or with friends, exploring, asking my own questions, going at my own pace. What I've created allows you to do that. I've created an easy to use guide that takes you through East, Central and West London, exploring some of the best that our City has to offer.
Each stop is very different and you can see from the guide which ones hold factory tours or chocolate making classes. (You can book these separately direct with the makers.)
Once you've downloaded the PDF file, its yours to keep. It super cost effective as you have it forever to refer back to. If you're doing the tour as a group it works out so cheap.
As a chocolatier who makes mass market products but adores the bean to bar makers, it's so important to witness first hand the chocolate that is made in London. It's not a trade that is easy to do. Ask a bean to bar maker how long it takes them to make one bar! It's also a skill that you need incredible passion and patience for. It's not something that is taught in schools or college. It is an expensive career path and involves alot of knowledge. I believe if you don't have a genuine passion for 'proper' chocolate it will be very hard to maintain a career in chocolate.
Questions to ask a Bean to Bar maker:
Where do your beans come from and what type are they?
Why did you choose that region?
What's the process once you get the beans.
How long does that process take?
How long did it take you to perfect your craft?
If you always buy the chocolate lover in your life chocolate, they would adore this as a gift. It's like a secret key to the best chocolate! It's an experience you can do with them, individually or as a group. You also don't have to do the tour all in one go. You can split it up and do it in areas. You can then add in some of the 'best of the rest' that are at the end of the guide.
The other beautiful thing about buying this from a small business is that you can ask me questions if you need to.
I really hope you enjoy the tour and please let me know of any chocolate makers you'd like to see added or anything you think could improve the tour.
Happy chocolate hunting!