Call it Belgische chocolade or Belgian chocolate – it doesn’t matter what language you use – it’s simply chocolate to me. I remember the first time I consciously tasted Belgian chocolate being just 17 at Mall of America in the United States. I remember saying to my cousin, “Wow, I love it!”
You could say I have been hooked ever since.
The fascination with chocolate, for this small country in the heart of Europe, goes back to the times when Belgium was under Spanish rule in the 17th century, shortly after chocolate was introduced to Europe. But, it wasn’t until the 20th Century, due to its large import of cocoa from its African colony of Congo, that the rest of the world paid the huge attention that the country now gets when it comes to chocolate.
Last night, as I was leaving Brussels airport, which by the way is the spot that sells most chocolates in the world, I bought myself some – to start the new year on a good note.