The Chocolate factory/OUR HISTORY

THE HISTORY OF THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY

It is primarily the story of two young Belgian expatriates in Belgian Congo and their passion for chocolate.

It all began in 1960. Jean-Guy set up an advertising agency in Léopoldville, where he met Marie-Anne, the woman who would become his wife. For her part, Marie-Anne had just started an apprenticeship with a Belgian artisan chocolatier. It was to prove a particularly difficult period for her. The chocolatier only rarely divulged his secrets. It was an arduous apprenticeship, but she was not going to give up. With perseverance and determination, Marie-Anne gradually mastered the art of chocolate making and her creations became increasingly popular. Marie-Anne and Jean-Guy founded their own chocolate factory and numbered among their customers diplomats, who presented Marie-Anne’s chocolates as luxury gifts to their foreign guests.

In 1967, although their business was just beginning to take off, the couple were forced to leave the country. So if they were going to have to leave, it seemed a good idea to opt for a sunny destination. So they chose the South of France and settled in the Aix-en-Provence region. Moving to Provence to set up a chocolate factory was quite a bizarre idea at the time! But they had already taken a chance when they opened their first chocolate factory in Belgian Congo. The ROELANDTS had tenacity flowing through their veins and so, always up for a challenge, they headed off for Provence. Marie-Anne and Jean-Guy made a big impression in Provence and put Puyricard on the chocolate-making map.

They set up their first workshop in an old building materials factory on the Puyricard plateau. Such was their fondness for this little “corner of paradise” that they even adopted it as the name for their business, the brand name of ROELANDTS family chocolates.

THE CHOCOLATERIE DE PUYRICARD, A FAMILY AFFAIR

Now it is their son Tanguy, himself a Master Chocolatier, who heads the family business founded in 1967.

Armed with the expertise handed down to him by his parents, precision, tenacity, knowledge and respect for traditional methods, Tanguy ROELANDTS is keeping this precious legacy alive. So passionate is he about his work that he regularly travels around the countries of the equatorial region in search of new flavours. He has in-depth knowledge of the different varieties of cocoa beans, the regions where they are grown and their characteristics. “To produce great chocolate, you have to use a combination of cocoa beans from different regions, get to know the cocoa tree plantations (in Africa, South America or Asia) and monitor them on a regular basis”

Like a wine cellar master, Tanguy ROELANDTS works with “pure origin” cocoa beans and personally blends the carefully chosen vintages which will be used to create Puyricard chocolates. Following his creative instincts, he works with his colleague Michel PABARIELLO, also a Master Chocolatier, to combine different flavours, textures and noble ingredients with one overriding objective: to achieve the perfect balance which will bring out all the flavour and create a moment of pleasure that will live long in the memory.

It is important that we leave our mark, which then becomes the gatekeeper to your palate. It then allows the finest flavours through to captivate you and bring you intense pleasure. Everything else is merely transitory...