Hello and welcome to the Brussels Chocolate Shop Tour! This is the second tour in my serious of dessert tours of the world, the first being the Paris Patisserie Tour, and just like that tour, this tour is also a walking tour of the city, consisting of stops at carefully selected chocolate shops, based on hours of research, and mapped out using good ol’ google maps. Luckily, my hotel was very centrally located (not by accident), and Brussels just so happens to be a very walk-able city, so I was able to visit 10 (yes, 10!) chocolate shops over the span of 2 days. Based on the route I planned ahead of time, I broke it down into 4 shops the first day, and 6 the second, and I’ll post them in the order visited, in case you get the urge to try the tour yourself.
So lace up those snow boots, and let’s get right down to it!
Stop #1: Galler Chocolatier.
snow covered chocolate.
It was snowing when I stepped foot out of my hotel door, and began wandering the streets of Brussels, attempting to follow along with the map. My first few turns were not working out as I thought they should, and I couldn’t get my bearings at all. It was early, and it was Sunday – so the streets were pretty quiet, except for a few folks toting wheeled suitcases along behind them, and a man chatting loudly with himself near the train station. I was becoming slightly apprehensive, and began questioning why I was there to begin with, having had only slept for about 4 hours the night before on the plane. Those thoughts were soon banished from my brain forever – it was as if the chocolate gods were smiling down upon me and I suddenly found myself at this little circle, which ultimately lead right to the Grande Place – the central point around which my entire navigational plan was based.
very grande indeed.
From that moment on, the city became friendlier, and I found Galler Chocolatier with ease. The shop itself was small – but the selection was large, and lovely. The types of chocolates were unique as well – the white chocolate coffee particularly jumped out at me, so I made sure to get one of those, along with a coconut and a hazelnut.
it’s all in the bag.
The shop was manned by one lone woman, who spoke french to me initially, but effortlessly switched to english as soon as I began speaking. She placed my chocolates delicately in the bag, and handed over the goods. I wasn’t sure if taking photos of the interior of shops was an acceptable practice in those parts, so I asked her if I could take a picture and she not only agreed, but seemed rather pleased, and started straightening up the counter (which already looked pretty straight to me) before I took the photo. I wonder if she thought I was some well-known American dessert writer or celebrity chef on a whirlwind chocolate-eating tour of Europe to be featured in my next tv show or book. At least, I’d like to think she thought that..
the cleanest little counter in brussels.
All in all, Galler was the perfect introduction into the world of authentic Belgian chocolate – petite and sweet, with a variety of fine mouth-watering selections. My initial instincts were correct – the white chocolate coffee was definitely the best, and wound of being one of the best chocolates on the entire tour.
To be continued in the next post: Stop #2: Planete Chocolate – the world we all dream of.