Tag Archives: Lindt Chocolate Studio

Lindt Chocolate Studio: exceptional chocolate, exceptional Macaron-Baking course!

It was on a visit to the newish Lindt Chocolate Studio in the Silo District in the V&A Waterfront that I saw a list of the courses which the Lindt Chocolate Studio offers. On Saturday my Parisian friend Aurélie Jullien and I attended the two-hour Macaron baking course, and we were very proud of our baking success.  We were to,d that there are only two Lindt Chocolate Studios in the world, the Cape Town one, and one in Johannesburg.  Continue reading →

Lindt Chocolate Studio Sweet Service and Cape Town International Sour Service Awards!

Lindt logoThe Sweet Service Award goes to Lindt Chocolate Studio and its Manager Dimo Simatos, for organising a special delivery of its Lindt turndown chocolates we use for the guest houses. Having popped in at the Studio almost two weeks ago, with all the staff attending a conference on that day other than one young disinterested lady, who told me that they would only receive delivery of the chocolates two days later.  She did not tell me that I would have to place an order for the chocolates, something I have never had to do before. Calling later in the week, I was told that all 10000 such chocolates had sold out in the two days since delivery.  The next delivery would only take place in two weeks from that time.  I told Dimo that I needed the chocolates desperately, having run out due to their supply problem.  He promised to make a plan, and was true to his word, in that I could fetch the chocolates yesterday, one week earlier than delivery had been promised. Continue reading →

Lindt spices up chocolate with launch of its Excellence Wasabi slab!

I was lucky to have been invited to the Lindt Chocolate Studio at the Good Food & Wine Show in May, not only to receive an update of its unusual ‘Spice up your Chocolate Life with Lindt Excellence’ range, but also to taste the superb cooking of One&Only Cape Town’s new Nobu Executive Chef Fred Faucheux, at his Chef’s Table.

Cape Town Lindt Head Chocolatier Dimo Simatos, who has been part of the South African Culinary Olympics’ pastry team, explained that Lindt’s Excellence range is all about flavours and tastes, and how to combine and mix them.  The very slim Dark range already consists of 70% Cocoa, A Touch of Sea Salt, and Chilli.  At the event the Wasabi flavoured Lindt Excellence was launched, available to the public from this month onward.

Lindt used the culinary skills of Chef Fred to demonstrate their Excellence chocolate range at the event.  He commented about their range: ‘Working with new and exciting flavours is what I love most about cooking, and being able to work with chocolate that contains some of my favourite spices – Wasabi, Chilli, and Sea Salt – has introduced me to brand new taste combinations’.

Chef Fred prepared tasting portions of Kingklip sashimi and dry miso enhanced by the Lindt Excellence Touch of Sea Salt chocolate, which he topped off with olive oil, yuzu sauce, and Maldon sea salt.  The chocolate slab only consists of cocoa butter, which melts quickly in the mouth, thus releasing its flavour quickly, we were told. The hand- harvested ‘Fleur de Sel’ comes from Brittany, and is blended into the Lindt Dark chocolate.

This was followed by Prawn yuzu anticucho and vegetable shavings, which were topped with a Lindt Excellence Chilli chocolate sauce, reflecting Nobu owner Nobu Matsuhisa’s unique Peruvian and Japanese cuisine mix.  The Chilli slab has ‘one drop of Essential oil of chilli pepper per 100g slab‘, to flavour it, and its taste is subtle due to the slow release of the spice.

Then Chef Fred served Goma Beef fillet with white sesame, Lindt Excellence Wasabi chocolate dressing, and shavings with Sake green vegetables, a dish he has added to Nobu’s current winter menu.  The wasabi flavour melts away once tasted.

To end off the tasting feast, Chocolatier Dimo prepared a Wasabi Miro dessert made from caramelised white chocolate, dark chocolate fudge cake, pear, vanilla, and ganache, topped with a Lindt Thin.

Lindt has an impressive Chocolate Studio & Boutique in the old Cape Quarter building in De Waterkant, Cape Town, at which one can buy all their chocolate ranges and also participate in their chocolate workshops on desserts, décor, and praline making.  There is a Lindt Studio in Fourways too.

Disclosure:  We received a most professionally packaged Lindt Excellence media pack, with recipes, chocolate slabs, and background information, literally good enough to eat!

POSTSCRIPT: 31/7: Lindt’s PR company Communication Services Africa delivered the two latest Lindt Excellence flavours today, being ‘A Touch of Vanilla’ and ‘Coconut Intense’.  The Madagascan Vanilla aroma is embedded in the white chocolate slab.  The Coconut flakes are enrobed in fine dark chocolate.

Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio : www.whalecottage.com Twitter:@WhaleCottage

Franschhoek coated in chocolate at new Le Chocolatier Factory

Franschhoek has been known for its gourmet status for many years, not only for its top restaurants, but also for the excellent ancillary food businesses in the village.   Now a new chocolate manufacturing facility adds another dimension to Franschhoek’s status, with the opening of Le Chocolatier Factory, offering 90 different chocolate types at any time, out of a total repertoire of 250.

While chocolates are made in the shop, Le Chocolatier Factory is no factory at all, and one can see the staff making the chocolate when coming in to buy chocolates, next door to their restaurant Café le Chocolatier, in Place Vendôme, as one enters Franschhoek.  Dark chocolate outsells milk chocolate by 60 to 40 %, and champagne truffles are the most popular seller.  The Le Chocolatier chocolates contain little cocoa butter, and the dark chocolates have very little sugar content.

Three ex-staff of Huguenot Fine Chocolates, of which two chocolatiers did their training in chocolate-making in Belgium, make the chocolates, using Lindt chocolate and also their equipment.  Passionate owner Daniel Waldis is Swiss, and his love for chocolate led him to buy the restaurant about two years ago, and to introduce more chocolate items to his menu, given the name of the restaurant.  They have wonderful cakes such as Black Forest, Vanilla Mousse, muffins, brownies and Chocolate Dreams, a well as chocolate frappé and hot chocolate.  All coffee is served with a complimentary chocolate.

Initially, chocolates were made on a small scale inside the restaurant, until they ran out of space, and the restaurant became busier, being one of few to stay open until 20h00, even in winter.  A shop which Waldis owned next door to his restaurant, for another business, has now become the home of his chocolate business. Waldis is seeing a tourist benefit in his business, and is offering packages for individuals and tour groups.   The Silver Tour costs R40, and one can observe the chocolate making and choose 5 chocolates.   The Gold Tour costs R69, and includes the observation of the chocolate making, as well as a selection of six chocolates, and a cappuccino or a hot chocolate.  The Platinum Tour costs R249, and allows one to make one’s own chocolates, with a certificate provided of one’s newly gained chocolate skills.  The price includes an hour with the chocolatiers, as well as a coffee. Children are enjoying this tour too, and are charged R149, with a minimum of two to be booked. Chocolates are charged at R79 per 100g, and R149 per 200g.  Hospitality turn-down packs will also be available on order. Chocolate-making demos are also taken to events.

Waldis says of this course that it is better than the one at the Lindt Chocolate Studio in the Cape Quarter in Cape Town, which is not owned by Lindt. Their course was attended by one of his staff, and they had to ask him questions about chocolate-making!  He explained how complicated chocolate-making is, in getting the base thinner rather than thick, and to keep the exterior of the chocolate shiny.  He is a strong supporter of Lindt, preferring its taste to Belgian chocolate, which has a higher cocoa butter content.

Seeing a gap in the Franschhoek market, Waldis has also introduced a little deli, selling predominantly German but also Italian, imported goods such as pudding powders, bulk Lindt chocolate, waffle biscuits, Schwartau jams, créme cappuccino, Haribo sweets, sour cherries, bottled gherkins, bottled garlic, Remoulade sauce, German mustard, black olives, German mayonnaise, biscuits, and lemon tea.   They will be adding Valrhona chocolate slabs to the range too.

Due to the popularity of the restaurant, as well as the additional business that the Le Chocolatier Factory is bringing to the restaurant, a part of the Place Vendôme garden space has been allocated alongside the restaurant, providing additional seating for 36 guests.

Le Chocolatier Factory, Place Vendôme, Huguenot Road, Franschhoek.  Tel (021) 876-2233.  Website under construction.  Monday – Sunday, 8h00 – 18h00

POSTSCRIPT: Le Chocolatier has closed down in Franschhoek, and has moved to The Apprentice in Stellenbosch.

Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio: www.whalecottage.com Twitter:@WhaleCottage