Tuesday, May 22, 2018

House Of Chocolate: An All-In-One History Museum, Cafe, & Boutique

Just beside the Grenada History Museum, House of Chocolate Grenada  offers an even sweeter history lesson.
It was a fascinating touch of blissful wonder strolling through the bumbling doors of House of Chocolate-- a mini-museum space exploring history of chocolate in the heart of the Caribbean country. In addition to an informative layout on chocolate history, House of Chocolate features an indie spirited store housing chocolates, chocolate inspired books, clothing, purses/wallets, jewelry, spices, and more among a small café and homey gathering space. An on site chocolatier preps all of the yummy chocolate confections and delights. Although most desserts and drinks are nonvegan, there are exceptional treats for us including unique truffles and a sensational mug of hot cocoa tea-- a premiere specialty.

Viewers are instructed to enter and make a left towards the museum side, learning first about cacao and its three main varieties: Criollo, Forastero,and Trinitario. Criollo (means "native" in Spanish), originated in Mexico and primarily cultivated in Central America, has notes of caramel, nuts, vanilla, and tobacco, is the rarest and most expensive cocoa, and accounts for 5% of the cocoa beans grown in the world. Forastero (means "foreigner" in Spanish), originated in the Amazon and primarily cultivated in West Africa, Ivory Coast, and Ghana, has a classic mild chocolate flavor, is the most commonly grown cocoa bean, and is a fast growing, high yielding tree, very resistant to disease unlike Criollo. Trinitario is a natural hybrid of Criollo and Forastero-- results of an accidental cross-fertilization that transpired in Trinidad around 1730. It is primarily cultivated in Grenada, Venezuela, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, Papua New Guinea, and other Latin and Caribbean countries. It has a high bean flavor, fragile tree, and produces a rich cocoa grade flavor.

What is cacao? Quite frankly, the heart of all chocolate dreams and desires.

The museum then centers on local history. Some of it isn't pretty.
A waxing poetic story that glaringly sugarcoats cacao bean slavery and excess colonialism complete with lithography illustrations.

Archive photo of cacao farmers.

Cacao beans were formerly used as wealth and status. In this historic pricing chart, cacao beans could get someone animals like rabbits and turtles (insert sobs), clothes, jewelry, and slaves (crying).

Old fashioned devices of the cocoa tea.

Visitors can peel cacao shells and grind them into paste.

Keep calm & eat Grenada Chocolate. Okay.

Chocolate scented candles galore.

From Curious George to chocolate recipes and chocolate history, there is a sweet topic for all ages to browse through in the small book collection. 

The top shelf chocolate books.

I ordered the cocoa tea, a huge treat for the locals. It is made with a cocoa ball (cacao nibs rolled up with spices and bayleaf) melting into hot water and served with organic sugar.

The hot beverage is a fine line between tea and hot chocolate, rich and delightful, sophisticated and refined.

On my birthday, almost seven years ago, the world's largest chocolate bar was made in Alfreton, Derbyshire, UK!

The only vegan treats were a top of row of truffles excluding peanut butter and salted vanilla-- strawberry, passion fruit, ginger, and guava were dairy free.

Also featured in the gift shop/boutique, expect Grenada's top chocolate companies-- Grenada Chocolate Company, Crayfish Bay, and Jouvey Chocolate.

In addition to chocolate bars, cocoa powders, cacao nibs, cocoa tea balls, and cocoa butter are some specialty treats on sale.

I tried enticing free samples of ginger, nutmeg, nibs, salted pieces-- all amazing tidbits of pure dark chocolate sweetened with sugar and spice. It was hard to pick a favorite.

I hold a cacao pod with great joy having earlier suckled a taste of an opened plant. Slick and slimy seeds are covered in white flesh. You suck off the flesh, which tastes sweet and fruity like the juice of bananas. 

Gorgeous artisan truffles in Strawberry and Passion fruit.

I came back two days later, on my last day, for another helping of cocoa tea.

Making forth a home on a comforting bench with a cacao pod pillow.

A 2lb chocolate bar would have been nice to take home-- except it was extremely hot in Grenada, too hot to lug around a bar that would melt in rapid seconds. Still, what a beautiful sight!

Well deserved trip advisor Certificate of Excellence honor for House of Grenada, an exceptional, creative environment with warm, welcoming atmosphere featuring courteous staff, delicious island made chocolate, and plentiful good reading. I hope to return again someday.


  1. What a great tour you gave us and I love your head scarf! That tea sounds delicious :)

    1. Awwwww thank you!!!! And the tea is quite excellent. I've been drinking it a lot since coming back home.

  2. This place looks awesome. Especially that tea.

    1. I wish I could go back. Like right now. It's such a sweet place!